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Re: Against war

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  • Jim
    Irvin, Your posts (and those of Bill on this topic) strike me as the posts of an addict. Once a person becomes an addict they lose their ability to judge and
    Message 1 of 18 , Mar 3 1:20 PM
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      Irvin,

      Your posts (and those of Bill on this topic) strike me as the posts of an addict.

      Once a person becomes an addict they lose their ability to judge and act ethically. A drug addict will rob his own family and friends for the money to buy his drugs; he will mug innocent passers-by in order to get his next fix.

      Your addiction to oil seems to have affected your ethical judgement.

      My English heritage includes instruction in the stories of the Bible. Prominent amongst these is the Parable of the Good Samaritan, in which Jesus says we should treat the foreigner as we would treat one of our own. I read this parable as saying that it is just as wrong to harm someone in a far off land in order to maintain my comfortable lifestyle as it is to harm one of my own kith and kin.

      Jim




      --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "irvhal" <i99hj@...> wrote:
      >
      > Jim,
      >
      > Whether Libya alone would suffice to provoke the harm I hypothesized is an empirical matter I can't answer, though I suspect it wouldn't. But what if it did? Or what of a larger source, say Saudi Arabia? Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? Or what if China or Russia sought to control the region? Wil took note in a recent post of the "violence" experienced by so many in our Great Recession. I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?
      >
      > Irvin
      >
    • eupraxis@aol.com
      Jim, With all due respect to you, England rarely followed that model. Had they, we here would be drinking tea instead of coffee. Wil ... From: Jim
      Message 2 of 18 , Mar 3 1:24 PM
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        Jim,

        With all due respect to you, England rarely followed that model. Had they, we here would be drinking tea instead of coffee.

        Wil


        -----Original Message-----
        From: Jim <jjimstuart1@...>
        To: existlist <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Thu, Mar 3, 2011 3:20 pm
        Subject: [existlist] Re: Against war





        Irvin,

        Your posts (and those of Bill on this topic) strike me as the posts of an addict.

        Once a person becomes an addict they lose their ability to judge and act ethically. A drug addict will rob his own family and friends for the money to buy his drugs; he will mug innocent passers-by in order to get his next fix.

        Your addiction to oil seems to have affected your ethical judgement.

        My English heritage includes instruction in the stories of the Bible. Prominent amongst these is the Parable of the Good Samaritan, in which Jesus says we should treat the foreigner as we would treat one of our own. I read this parable as saying that it is just as wrong to harm someone in a far off land in order to maintain my comfortable lifestyle as it is to harm one of my own kith and kin.

        Jim

        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "irvhal" <i99hj@...> wrote:
        >
        > Jim,
        >
        > Whether Libya alone would suffice to provoke the harm I hypothesized is an empirical matter I can't answer, though I suspect it wouldn't. But what if it did? Or what of a larger source, say Saudi Arabia? Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? Or what if China or Russia sought to control the region? Wil took note in a recent post of the "violence" experienced by so many in our Great Recession. I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?
        >
        > Irvin
        >









        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • irvhal
        Jim, I should note that oil -- for the present -- is not only an intricate foundation of modern industrial economies and the living standards to which most
        Message 3 of 18 , Mar 3 7:38 PM
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          Jim,

          I should note that oil -- for the present -- is not only an intricate foundation of modern industrial economies and the living standards to which most aspire for a good life, but the primary source of wealth for oil possessing countries. As such a hypothetical oil cut-off in contravention of inter-national and reciprocal agreements, besides being a harmful provocation, would be a loosing proposition for all and thus unlikely in normal course. But its the abnormal, the terrorist, the triumphalists you've acknowledged before and who are oblivious to ripple effects, who'd be the true muggers who force others' hand.

          Irvin

          --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Jim" <jjimstuart1@...> wrote:
          >
          > Irvin,
          >
          > Your posts (and those of Bill on this topic) strike me as the posts of an addict.
          >
          > Once a person becomes an addict they lose their ability to judge and act ethically. A drug addict will rob his own family and friends for the money to buy his drugs; he will mug innocent passers-by in order to get his next fix.
          >
          > Your addiction to oil seems to have affected your ethical judgement.
          >
          > My English heritage includes instruction in the stories of the Bible. Prominent amongst these is the Parable of the Good Samaritan, in which Jesus says we should treat the foreigner as we would treat one of our own. I read this parable as saying that it is just as wrong to harm someone in a far off land in order to maintain my comfortable lifestyle as it is to harm one of my own kith and kin.
          >
          > Jim
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "irvhal" <i99hj@> wrote:
          > >
          > > Jim,
          > >
          > > Whether Libya alone would suffice to provoke the harm I hypothesized is an empirical matter I can't answer, though I suspect it wouldn't. But what if it did? Or what of a larger source, say Saudi Arabia? Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? Or what if China or Russia sought to control the region? Wil took note in a recent post of the "violence" experienced by so many in our Great Recession. I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?
          > >
          > > Irvin
          > >
          >
        • tom
          Jim I agree with you that it would be wonderful if governments ever really started conducting their foreign policies in a moral manner. The Gospel parable of
          Message 4 of 18 , Mar 4 1:40 PM
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            Jim

            I agree with you that it would be wonderful if governments ever really started conducting their foreign policies in a moral manner. The Gospel parable of Satan offering Jesus the kingdom of heaven was a symbolism of the fact that the world was in effect owned by what might be described as quite amoral forces. I suspect in the days of Attila the Hun and some such with nomadic hunting tribes who overan villages when the opportunity arose, Attila could be pretty upfront with his Huns. Invading a townstate and taking a vacation from hunting for a month or so until they ate up all the grain in the warehouse, and enjoyed new women, and partying like outlaw bikers during that time, after which they left with any women,gold, or fast horses around was something the men would relish and take risks for. However, as nomadic hunting gave way to agriculture, commerce, and finance, moral reasons had to be made up to convince the masses that the war was a moral one. Everything from saving the souls of pagans, or Operation Free Iraq, but in reality the real motives are usually as amoral as those of Attila's huns.In Orwell's 1984, enemies and allies change over night; and a Bog Dylan peace song almost 50 years "God on our side" had the line about Germany after ww2"Though they murdered 6 million in their ovens they fried, the Germans now too have God on their side".

            Peace
            Tom
            ----- Original Message -----
            From: Jim
            To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Thursday, March 03, 2011 6:55 AM
            Subject: [existlist] Re: Against war



            Irvin,

            Are you saying that when it comes to national interest and treatment of foreigners, it is ok to be amoral?

            Jim

            --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "irvhal" <i99hj@...> wrote:
            >
            > I concur. Our geo-strategic interest in oil must be resolved not in reference (or deference) to idealistic notions of nation-building or dialectics, but rather realpolitik. Such is the world we're in. And as Nietzsche might say, what survives of the good and noble is rarely not also assertive and strong.
            >
            > Irvin
            >





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Jim
            Irvin, I find your recent posts rather sinister, as well as arrogant and amoral. You seem to be saying that America has a God-given right to the oil under the
            Message 5 of 18 , Mar 5 12:33 PM
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              Irvin,

              I find your recent posts rather sinister, as well as arrogant and amoral.

              You seem to be saying that America has a God-given right to the oil under the ground in Middle Eastern countries, and it would be perfectly acceptable for the US to kill anybody who got in the way of the continuous flow of the oil into the US.

              For example you write:

              "But any gratuitous cut-off of oil with its foreseeable convulsive consequences to our nations could reasonably be treated as an act of war, regardless of the type of government in question. As to who's more "ethical" in the pending civil war in Lybia, I don't know."

              "Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? … I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?"

              "But its the abnormal, the terrorist, the triumphalists you've acknowledged before and who are oblivious to ripple effects, who'd be the true muggers who force others' hand."

              What you write in these passages seems so alien to my own ethical outlook and way of understanding recent events, I feel I would have more in common with a Middle-Eastern Muslim than I do with a white protestant American like yourself.

              Where to start?

              First, a factual issue. The only people who seem to think that al-qaida are prominent in the anti-Government demonstrations in the Middle East seem to Col Gaddafi, Bill and yourself. (Or is Fox News putting out as distorted an account of the Libyan situation as Libyan state television?)

              Second, it seems perfectly clear to me that in Libya the non-violent, unarmed protesters have the ethical high ground, rather than Gaddafi who ordered the shooting of the demonstrators. Hence The International Criminal Court, based in The Hague, is starting an investigation of possible war crimes by Gaddafi against his own people. The fact that you "don't know" which side in the civil war is more ethical, defies belief.

              Third, I don't know if the Libyan government, or any other Middle-Eastern government, has signed any contracts to deliver so much oil over so many months to the US, but even if they had, I don't see breaking a contract as an "act of war", or a mugging to force the hand of another. I agree it is wrong to break a contract, but it is a non-violent wrong, and a non-violent wrong should not be met with violence.

              Fourth, as I say at the start of this post, I don't think any nation can lay claim to the natural resources of another nation. You seem to think that when it comes to oil, all international law and all ethical considerations can go out of the window. When it comes to oil, anything goes!

              Finally, I expect that the forthcoming demonstrations for democracy and justice in Saudi Arabia on 11th March will be crushed with America's blessing. The result will be that Western car drivers will have blood on their hands. Whilst, no doubt sensitive Westerners will feel a measure of guilt about this, you suggest that such guilt will be misplaced. Your own heritage does not seem to see the foreigner as a human being worthy of the respect accorded to your own kith and kin.

              Jim
            • eupraxis@aol.com
              Jim, Wherever I hear heritage , I see a license to commit any act in its name. Wil ... From: Jim To: existlist
              Message 6 of 18 , Mar 5 12:43 PM
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                Jim,

                Wherever I hear "heritage", I see a license to commit any act in its name.

                Wil


                -----Original Message-----
                From: Jim <jjimstuart1@...>
                To: existlist <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Sat, Mar 5, 2011 2:33 pm
                Subject: [existlist] Re: Against war





                Irvin,

                I find your recent posts rather sinister, as well as arrogant and amoral.

                You seem to be saying that America has a God-given right to the oil under the ground in Middle Eastern countries, and it would be perfectly acceptable for the US to kill anybody who got in the way of the continuous flow of the oil into the US.

                For example you write:

                "But any gratuitous cut-off of oil with its foreseeable convulsive consequences to our nations could reasonably be treated as an act of war, regardless of the type of government in question. As to who's more "ethical" in the pending civil war in Lybia, I don't know."

                "Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? … I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?"

                "But its the abnormal, the terrorist, the triumphalists you've acknowledged before and who are oblivious to ripple effects, who'd be the true muggers who force others' hand."

                What you write in these passages seems so alien to my own ethical outlook and way of understanding recent events, I feel I would have more in common with a Middle-Eastern Muslim than I do with a white protestant American like yourself.

                Where to start?

                First, a factual issue. The only people who seem to think that al-qaida are prominent in the anti-Government demonstrations in the Middle East seem to Col Gaddafi, Bill and yourself. (Or is Fox News putting out as distorted an account of the Libyan situation as Libyan state television?)

                Second, it seems perfectly clear to me that in Libya the non-violent, unarmed protesters have the ethical high ground, rather than Gaddafi who ordered the shooting of the demonstrators. Hence The International Criminal Court, based in The Hague, is starting an investigation of possible war crimes by Gaddafi against his own people. The fact that you "don't know" which side in the civil war is more ethical, defies belief.

                Third, I don't know if the Libyan government, or any other Middle-Eastern government, has signed any contracts to deliver so much oil over so many months to the US, but even if they had, I don't see breaking a contract as an "act of war", or a mugging to force the hand of another. I agree it is wrong to break a contract, but it is a non-violent wrong, and a non-violent wrong should not be met with violence.

                Fourth, as I say at the start of this post, I don't think any nation can lay claim to the natural resources of another nation. You seem to think that when it comes to oil, all international law and all ethical considerations can go out of the window. When it comes to oil, anything goes!

                Finally, I expect that the forthcoming demonstrations for democracy and justice in Saudi Arabia on 11th March will be crushed with America's blessing. The result will be that Western car drivers will have blood on their hands. Whilst, no doubt sensitive Westerners will feel a measure of guilt about this, you suggest that such guilt will be misplaced. Your own heritage does not seem to see the foreigner as a human being worthy of the respect accorded to your own kith and kin.

                Jim









                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • irvhal
                Jim, In the night, imagining some fear, how easy is a bush supposed a bear, wrote Shakespeare. Note if you will, that I ve been a critic of our governments
                Message 7 of 18 , Mar 5 3:47 PM
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                  Jim,

                  In the night, imagining some fear, how easy is a bush supposed a bear, wrote Shakespeare. Note if you will, that I've been a critic of our governments' invasion of both Iraq and Afghanistan. On these points, as demonstrated most recently by your former prime minister's admissions, our leaders were, at best, under or mis-informed, which should remind us of our finitude, of the reality that we act always constrained by time and limited knowledge. There are no linear unfoldments to consult courtesy of some historic dialectic, Marxist or otherwise (which I hasten to add I don't attribute to you). Nor I think it sinister to acknowledge our limits in assessing from our comfortable perches in Britain and America who is more "ethical" in the civil conflicts now brewing. I suspect our disagreement is more empirical than philosophical. Or as President Reagan might have said, what's two old thinkers like us getting so lathered up over something we're probably not that far apart on anyway?

                  All the best,

                  Irvin

                  --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Jim" <jjimstuart1@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Irvin,
                  >
                  > I find your recent posts rather sinister, as well as arrogant and amoral.
                  >
                  > You seem to be saying that America has a God-given right to the oil under the ground in Middle Eastern countries, and it would be perfectly acceptable for the US to kill anybody who got in the way of the continuous flow of the oil into the US.
                  >
                  > For example you write:
                  >
                  > "But any gratuitous cut-off of oil with its foreseeable convulsive consequences to our nations could reasonably be treated as an act of war, regardless of the type of government in question. As to who's more "ethical" in the pending civil war in Lybia, I don't know."
                  >
                  > "Isn't there contractural and forward arrangements here begetting what contract law calls detrimental reliance? … I suspect what we've sufferred so far would pale in comparison to the foreseeable convulsions of an abrupt oil cut-off. We always must act disadvantaged from time and knowledge constraints, but could we indeed rule out war under any circumstance?"
                  >
                  > "But its the abnormal, the terrorist, the triumphalists you've acknowledged before and who are oblivious to ripple effects, who'd be the true muggers who force others' hand."
                  >
                  > What you write in these passages seems so alien to my own ethical outlook and way of understanding recent events, I feel I would have more in common with a Middle-Eastern Muslim than I do with a white protestant American like yourself.
                  >
                  > Where to start?
                  >
                  > First, a factual issue. The only people who seem to think that al-qaida are prominent in the anti-Government demonstrations in the Middle East seem to Col Gaddafi, Bill and yourself. (Or is Fox News putting out as distorted an account of the Libyan situation as Libyan state television?)
                  >
                  > Second, it seems perfectly clear to me that in Libya the non-violent, unarmed protesters have the ethical high ground, rather than Gaddafi who ordered the shooting of the demonstrators. Hence The International Criminal Court, based in The Hague, is starting an investigation of possible war crimes by Gaddafi against his own people. The fact that you "don't know" which side in the civil war is more ethical, defies belief.
                  >
                  > Third, I don't know if the Libyan government, or any other Middle-Eastern government, has signed any contracts to deliver so much oil over so many months to the US, but even if they had, I don't see breaking a contract as an "act of war", or a mugging to force the hand of another. I agree it is wrong to break a contract, but it is a non-violent wrong, and a non-violent wrong should not be met with violence.
                  >
                  > Fourth, as I say at the start of this post, I don't think any nation can lay claim to the natural resources of another nation. You seem to think that when it comes to oil, all international law and all ethical considerations can go out of the window. When it comes to oil, anything goes!
                  >
                  > Finally, I expect that the forthcoming demonstrations for democracy and justice in Saudi Arabia on 11th March will be crushed with America's blessing. The result will be that Western car drivers will have blood on their hands. Whilst, no doubt sensitive Westerners will feel a measure of guilt about this, you suggest that such guilt will be misplaced. Your own heritage does not seem to see the foreigner as a human being worthy of the respect accorded to your own kith and kin.
                  >
                  > Jim
                  >
                • Jim
                  Irvin, I tend to think that the philosophical (i.e. ethical) disagreements between us are significant, and more so than the empirical disagreements, which are
                  Message 8 of 18 , Mar 6 2:33 AM
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                    Irvin,

                    I tend to think that the philosophical (i.e. ethical) disagreements between us are significant, and more so than the empirical disagreements, which are also present.

                    However we have now both expressed our thoughts on this issue so perhaps it is time to move on.

                    Just to mention the lead article in my Sunday newspaper which focuses on a new Government initiative to reduce our nation's dependency on oil for our energy needs.

                    Our Energy Secretary Chris Hume says: "Getting off the oil hook is made all the more urgent by the crisis in the Middle East. We cannot afford to go on relying on such a volatile source of energy when we have clean, green and secure energy from low-carbon sources."

                    In other words, we need to develop the technology to harness the "free" energy we can get from the sun, the wind and the waves. I gather the US has these three energy sources within its borders (including coastal waters), and if your country can more towards self-sufficiency in energy supply, all talk of foreign wars will fade away.

                    On the home front, the move should be from petrol cars to electric cars.

                    Jim




                    --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "irvhal" <i99hj@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Jim,
                    >
                    > In the night, imagining some fear, how easy is a bush supposed a bear, wrote Shakespeare. Note if you will, that I've been a critic of our governments' invasion of both Iraq and Afghanistan. On these points, as demonstrated most recently by your former prime minister's admissions, our leaders were, at best, under or mis-informed, which should remind us of our finitude, of the reality that we act always constrained by time and limited knowledge. There are no linear unfoldments to consult courtesy of some historic dialectic, Marxist or otherwise (which I hasten to add I don't attribute to you). Nor I think it sinister to acknowledge our limits in assessing from our comfortable perches in Britain and America who is more "ethical" in the civil conflicts now brewing. I suspect our disagreement is more empirical than philosophical. Or as President Reagan might have said, what's two old thinkers like us getting so lathered up over something we're probably not that far apart on anyway?
                    >
                    > All the best,
                    >
                    > Irvin
                    >
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