Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It's worth it. It's a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else's rights, because if you don't there is no one to defend yours. -- MaxedOutMama

I don't just want gun rights... I want individual liberty, a culture of self-reliance....I want the whole bloody thing. -- Kim du Toit

The most glaring example of the cognitive dissonance on the left is the concept that human beings are inherently good, yet at the same time cannot be trusted with any kind of weapon, unless the magic fairy dust of government authority gets sprinkled upon them.-- Moshe Ben-David

The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem. -- Sultan Knish

All politics in this country now is just dress rehearsal for civil war. -- Billy Beck

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Rousseau, Marx, Hegel, and Engels are Still Killing

Rousseau, Marx, Hegel, and Engels are Still Killing
Burma killed by tyranny

If Cyclone Nargis had struck not Rangoon, but Melbourne or Tokyo, it is unlikely more than a few dozen people, if that, would have died. And that's because we are free, and rich - as free people tend to be with capitalism. Even Bangkok would have survived this far, far easier.

But in Burma as many as 100,000 are now feared dead - victims not of global warming, but of a tyranny that has left them poor and defenceless.

Burma, a former British colony, was once the rice-bowl of South-East Asia, but in 1962 a bunch of generals took over with a misty-eyed plan to impose on their 50 million people the "Burmese Way to Socialism".

Their brand of politics was of the kind still distressingly popular at RMIT and Victoria University, and produced exactly the misery it's inflicted from Cuba to Russia.

The economy collapsed, and Burma went from bread-basket to basket-case. No wonder so many people today still live in shacks and shanties that were no protection against last Friday's high winds and storm surge.

Whenever the Burmese people tried to protest against this junta-made poverty, and to demand democracy, they were shot - so often and in such numbers that China is now about the only ally the junta has left. In this way does resource-ravenous China, Olympics host, export its tyranny to the world.

Now consider how this junta - so brutal, unaccountable, incompetent, tyrannical and isolated -- has handled this latest disaster.

Two days before Cyclone Nargis hit, India's Meteorological Department warned the junta's minions it was coming, and where.

But Burma's state-owned media, one of the crudest propaganda outfits I've seen, issued no mass alerts. Indeed, illegal Voice of America broadcasts probably did more to warn Burma's civilians to take shelter than did Burma's own radio station.

At first, the full scale of the disaster was kept from the world.

Perhaps even the junta itself may not have known it, given there are no journalists free in that country to report what they see, and no untapped phone lines or internet to tell the world the truth.

Even now, the junta is killing people with its paranoia. Disaster assessment teams and helicopters from the United States have been blocked from coming in to prepare a huge rescue, and foreign aid teams not already in-country had their applications for visas stalled and aid shipments stopped.

Foreign journalists, whose reports would help raise appeal money, have been banned.

The UN is now "intensely" negotiating with the junta to let in aid workers and ease customs regulations on aid - literally begging the junta to let the world save its people.

So slow has the junta been to let in help, that French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, founder of aid group Medicins Sans Frontieres, suggested the UN Security Council adopt a resolution allowing aid to be flown into the country by force. China, naturally, is against such interference in the affairs of its "friend".

True, the junta has let in some shipments of aid, and is particularly keen on being given cash rather than kind - which even the patsies of the European Union, not being completely insane, resist.

Why hand cash to thieves? I've seen for myself, on one of my trips to Burma, military heavies in shades openly demand bribes from Australian aid workers who were giving blankets to disaster victims.

In Mandalay, I saw a Red Cross ambulance, given by Japan, refitted for use as a taxi for military officials. The junta even today charges import duty on foreign donations.

With such tyrants in charge, the toll from Friday's cyclone - already horrific - can only keep rising.
"But NO!" protests the American socialist, "What's going on in Myanmar isn't really socialism!"

No, but then Edward O. Wilson described socialism/communism best:

Wonderful theory. Wrong species.

h/t on the article to Firehand.

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