Monday, February 24, 2014

Who are "They?"

“East is east and West is West…” and whether the “Twain” shall ever meet seems unlikely given the apparent determination of the U.S. and the E. U. to divide the Ukraine from Russia, meddling, as usual, in far-flung places probably not their business.

John McCain, perhaps the most malicious and reliable meddler of all, has recently announced that “They” want to be part of the West. By “they” he obviously has in mind Ukranians in general, rather than merely those Ukrainians living in the western part of the country. This I would think is true because he is obviously opposed to partitioning the country and, in his usual simplistic black and white approach to all political issues, is unable to deal with anything more complex than “shoot first, ask questions later.” If he has in mind only those Ukrainians living in the western part of that nation his claim they want to be part of the West may be true. But if he is really speaking for all Ukrainians it is not at all true. Ukrainians living in the East, who mostly speak Russian, and have long ties to Russia, do not want to be part of the West, preferring to stay more closely tied to Russia. In McCain’s view, or lack of view, these people are simply not important, not part of the problem, not even relevant.  McCain, and others like him, cold war warriors extraordinaire, will do anything to oppose Russia, no matter how unrealistic or irresponsible. There is a long history of Russian/Ukrainian ties, many, perhaps even most Ukrainians speak Russian, Ukraine is clearly within Russia’s sphere of influence, their neighbor, unlike the U.S. thousands of miles away. Of course Putin wants to continue his influence there, and treating him as if he has no business “meddling” there is simply absurd. The U.S. approach to foreign policy, which consists of meddling all over the world, demands that everyone do what it is we want them to do, and if they do not, sanctions, or worse. There is good reason people everywhere believe the U.S. is the greatest danger to peace. How many Russian drones are flying over other countries killing civilians? Other countries are not supposed to have national interests that are not in sync with ours. Susan Rice has also made this simplistic claim, that “They” want to be part of the West.

This use of the generic “They” has become commonplace in American politics. Politicians on both sides of the aisle (a completely artificial arrangement as there are so few differences between them) commonly speak of what it is the “American people” (they) want or believe. Of course there are no generic “American people,” so the American people they are referring to are simply those they think or pretend are those who they fantasize think the same way they do even, though as often than not they probably don’t. The English language as used in politics, is a far cry from the English language we think ordinarily think of, as George Orwell pointed out some time ago in his famous essay, “Politics and the English Language.”
Someone has said that “You campaign in poetry but have to govern in prose.” There is, I think, a grain of truth in that, but nowadays I think it is more true that you campaign in gobblegook and then govern with simplification, obfuscation, fabrication, and falsification. Hey, it’s the American way.
The American approach to the world is simple: we are good, they are bad, except for the Israelis who are, of course, as we are, always good.

 Right and wrong are determined by the people who hold positions of authority, that's the way it has always been so how then can anyone know this truth you speak of? Don't you see that truth long ago became a shadow of itself, it's a mere echo of the past now... The world is one big moral gray area, it just makes you feel safer that it can be categorized into good and bad that's not actually how it works.” 

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