• "God invented war so Americans could learn geography" -- Mark Twain.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Self Defence & The Pussy Riot

The Russian Orthodox Church claims that the Pussy Riot performance in St. Basil's Cathedral was an assault on Christian sensibilities. So?

Jesus offered no defence against his accusers and suffered every injury and indignity before and, most probably after, his Crucifixion.

Christ's absolute sufferance led his earliest followers to espouse an uncompromising passivism. It was a rule of the Early Church, that a Christian was not allowed to defend himself. Even St. Cyril Constantine (d. 869), who advocated "just defence" of neighbours, accepted the passivist premise against self-defence.

What did this mean? It meant very simply, that if struck you were to turn the other cheek; if thrown to the lions you were to offer neck to fang. A Christian was committed to suffer whatever evil God sent his way.

Now there are those who would like to engineer a more convenient result by resort to casuistry, which "resolves moral problems by extracting theoretical rules from particular instances and applying these rules to new situations." (Wiki)

Typically, this case-based rationalism seeks to manoeuvre between a thicket of supposed goods and not-goods by asking "how do we?" and "what is the purpose of?". The injunction to put aside the sword, these rationalists say, is a command to avoid violence. Self-defence without violence is permitted and indeed even "Christian."

Thus it is that AIKIDO is popular among those who wish to have their defence and be pacific too. The martial art of Aikido is based on receiving the force of violence but deflecting it mirror-like against its source so that the attacker end up attacking himself.

Clever but not Christian. There is nothing wrong with aikido as a martial art and as a martial art it is perhaps the most ingenious. But pacifism and Christianity are not co-terminous. Put another way, pacifism and submission are not the same thing. Jesus did indeed enjoin living by the sword but the crucified Christ went beyond that. The Christian who thinks he is emulating Christ by practicing non-violent Aikido deludes himself. The only way to emulate Christ is to suffer whatever crucifixion God bestows as one of his dubious graces.

Which leads us to the Pussy Riot. The Russian Orthodox Church is scandalized by what it calls the salacious and satanic performance of the female punk rock group within the sacred precincts. We did not have the benefit of seeing the performance ourselves and may accept that it was so grotesque and blasphemous as to be deeply offensive to orthodox religiosity. But so what?

There is a degree of palaver in the Russian and Western press about the unduly close ties between Church and Kremlin, about the unduely repressive response to an "inappropriate" exercise of nonetheless free speech, about the public relations disaster of the whole affair, on the one hand, and the substantial popularity of the prosecution on the other. We have also read that the Pussy Performers were put up to it by nefarious agencies seeking to stir up trouble in Russia. But none of this is here or there.

The Church should emulate its Founder and bear the injury with patience and gratitude. Had patriarch Kirill truly followed his Saviour he would have suffered through the performance and then invited the Pussy Girls to tea.


Saturday, August 4, 2012

Transparency Redux - Crystaline Clarity in Syria

A year ago this month, we noted  [1] the candor with which Western businessmen flocked to Libya on the very afternoon of Col. Qadaffi's murder. 

A provisional government we had never heard of in the news was there waiting to greet deplaning German and French businessmen with contracts and pens in hand.  The New York Times reported that at U.S. instance and request the Security Council had unfrozen $1.5 billion in seized Libyan assets in order to provide "aid" to the country.

So it was with some bemusement that we read in the New York Times today  [2] that,

"The State Department is considering positioning additional food and medical supplies in the region and is studying how to dismantle the raft of American and European sanctions against Syria quickly to allow investment to flow in and business to resume, avoiding further deterioration of life for ordinary people. "

One has to be an incurable moron not to realize the game afoot. What is amusing, in a contemptuous way,  is how the Western "leftishts" fall a-sucker over and over.  It apparently suffices to label the targetted ruler an ogre, a tyrant, a monster who stockpiles weapons of mass destruction, oppresses women and tortures dissidents for the left  to line up like good dumbfucks cheering on the latest Crusade for Democracy (and Reproductive Rights).

The United States has gotten quite good at this game, given that its own indpendence was foisted on  the world by twittering "Committees of Correspondence" waxing indignant over contrived atrocities such as the "Boston Massacre."  The United States honed the technique in Hispanic America where it was always able to find some corrupt "liberal-minded" prestanombre ("name-lender") who could recite Jeffersonian talking points by heart and who just needed a few companies of Marines to mow down "bandits" and "insurrectionists."  Why, just last month, the United States engineered a 48 hour impeachment of Paraguay's President Lugo.  Within weeks the "raison de coup" became clear: Monsanto was given the permission which Lugo had denied it to wreak an ecological holocaust on Paraguay with genetically modified seed and pesticides.  

But the Spontaneous Impeachment in Paraguay was child's play -- a mere trip down memory lane -- in comparison to America's newly honed and droned technique for "freeing up" a target country's assets. 

We recently wrote [3] that the core strategy of the U.S. "security wars" is to promote chaos and civil degradation so as to create perpetually fluid conditions for exploitation and control of resources. The strategists and leaders of the "First World" have realized that it is no longer necessary to go through the trouble and expense of installing despot puppets like Augusto Pinochet. It quite suffices to destroy whatever national authority exists and to negotiate contracts with whatever tribal or urban gangs (passing off as a "transitional government) are nearest to the bananas we want to pick.

As Rome created a desert and called it peace, the National Capitalist United States creates chaos and calls it freedom.

©Woodchipgazette, 2012

[1] http://wcg-newsandnotes.blogspot.com/2011/08/transparency.html

[2] http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/05/world/middleeast/state-dept-and-pentagon-planning-for-post-assad-syria.html

[3] http://wcg-journal.blogspot.com/2011/06/mining-harvesting-and-civil-carcinogens.html