Saturday, January 29, 2011
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
“Nor was Mr. Xi untainted by corruption scandals. One party investigation into bribe-taking in Ningde and Fuzhou, publicized years after he left Fujian, toppled two former city leaders whom Mr. Xi had promoted”.
“Since joining the inner sanctum in Beijing, Mr. Xi has reinforced his longstanding posture as a team player. As president of the Central Party School, Mr. Xi recently made a priority of teaching political morality based on Marxist-Leninist and Maoist ideals, a resurgent trend in the bureaucracy”.
“He once told the American ambassador to China over dinner that he enjoyed Hollywood films about World War II because of the American sense of good and evil, according to diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks. He took a swipe at Zhang Yimou, the renowned Chinese director, saying some Chinese filmmakers neglect values they should promote”.
“His [Xi's] views of the West remain difficult to define”.
“Some foreigners with full bellies and nothing better to do engage in finger-pointing at us”.
“First, China does not export revolution; second, it does not export famine and poverty; and third, it does not mess around with you. So what else is there to say?”
"Hu delighted Obama with an admission that China's human rights need improvement".
Resource Rent Tax
Applied Critical Thinking | www.SheldonThinks.com
Monday, January 24, 2011
"India may be the world’s largest democracy, but it remains dogged by the twin legacies of feudalism and colonialism, which have often meant that citizens are treated like subjects. Officials who are meant to serve them often act more like feudal lords than representatives of the people".
"The law was intended to be a much-needed leveler between the governors and the governed. In many ways it has worked, giving citizens the power to demand a measure of accountability from bureaucrats and politicians".
“Our hearts are broken after his death...You cannot fix the system. Everybody is getting money. If I give my life, what is the point?".
Reading this article “Iraq inquiry: we have every right to know why we went to war” by Michael Mansfield, QC in the Sunday Times, it is immediately apparent how naive lawyers are, and how much they need a conceptual grasp of law – call it ‘a philosophy of law’ This is just some of the damage caused by statutory law.
Michael Mansfield wrote ‘Memoirs of a Radical Lawyer’, published by Bloomsbury in Sept 2009. His argument is that
Mansfield asks: “How it was that a sophisticated, multifaceted parliamentary democracy failed to detect, let alone prevent, such a misconceived and costly military adventure? On this, there has been a singular lack of scrutiny and accountability”.
The answer is simply that our democratic, parliamentary system is none of those things. Our democracy is a fraud; a pretence of justice and leadership. The intent of parliament is to quash and placate your conflicts for the greater good of stability, and not to reconcile or resolve your conflicting values. The war was part of that charade. It was not a mistake...it exactly served their purposes. The public’s needs were never a consideration...neither were facts. The reason for people’s naivety on these issues is that they still possess some romantic notions of democracy, just as their parents held romantic notions about imperialism. People are struggling to recognise that all such follies are forms of collectivism. The contemporary democracy is leading us towards fascism and civil discontent, which stands a good chance of leading to civil war.
Mansfield writes: “The public, servicemen and women and thousands of dead, injured and displaced Iraqi citizens have a right to know, with a full public explanation and protocols for change”.
The reality is that they don’t have rights; they have only the pretence of them. Consider their political rights. What is the value of rights if the law is arbitrary? What is the point of political rights if you have no economic rights? Is it ok that the government can give you notional political rights, but at the same time plunder your wealth? There is no dichotomy between mind and body. If you have no economic rights; a right to retain your wealth; then you have no effective political rights.
It therefore does not surprise me that:
“ ...the Government has already imposed nine protocols for non-disclosure and secrecy”.
People however do not need to know whether there is some concrete evidence to justify war...the process by which all decisions are made is flawed. This system will not achieve justice....it’s just that people don’t grasp the nature of our political system. Why seek to persecute the politicians of the day, and then leave the system to exist as it is. Why live another day under such a bad system. The problem is not any person...its an idea. Unless people start thinking like humans – using causation – and not like animals – with correlation – we are simply going to make the same mistake...and fail to reform the system.
“The Iraq inquiry has resumed this week, promising crucial witnesses — Tony Blair, Jack Straw, Lord Goldsmith and possibly Gordon Brown. We have been told repeatedly what it is not: a trial, an inquest, an inquisition, a court, a statutory inquiry”.
There is a question of accountability; but are you going to hold politicians accountable for a system of ideas which they did not invent. Reform will go nowhere if there is any element of blame because the flaw does not lie with any one person; it is systematic and deeply embedded. We were all lied to as children; and our parents were lied to. They were not liars so much as products of their worse nature. Humanity had to discover what it means to be authentic, and it has been a challenge to change the system because we are corrupted to our core by entrenched subjectivism in our core political and educational institutions.
One of the problems is that too many people are going through life without questioning their most basic premises. They are living routines which they did not consciously choose, but which was subtly accepted in their cultural context. We need to challenge our most basic ideas if we are to progress. If a counterparty repudiates our ideas, we need to be open to all possibilities, with intelligibility or rationality and raw experiences as our only standard of value. We cannot allow any assumptions because they are a legacy of that era of collective delusion and self-righteousness.
“The truth is rarely pure and never simple but without it lessons will not be learnt, let alone remembered. This inquiry must ensure with all the means at its disposal that the truth is sought and found”.
What truth? That the existence of weapons of mass destruction was a fabrication? It would not be surprising...but that is not the message...that some ministers’ are flawed...the system is flawed. Irrespective of the reasons; it was moral for Britain to invade Iraq. The problem is the system which sabotages broader decision-making. This is not a crime scene...there is the prospect of a broader revolution in thinking and action. Education, crime, justice, health...these are all pertinent issues sabotaged by our system of government...which sabotages people’s thinking.
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
“We believe in discourse in America. We believe in strenuous discourse. We don’t sweep differences under the rug".
“Tom and I have real differences. But we can do it civilly. I will say, to Tom’s credit, we have disagreed on a whole lot of stuff, but he’s always been civil, he’s always been a gentleman. And that’s an example that people should follow — politicians and the media.”
Monday, January 17, 2011
For the sake of this discussion, let’s stipulate that Loughner was a “lone nutjob” who had never listened to Glenn Beck or been a card-carrying member of either the Tea or Communist parties. Let’s also face another tragedy: The only two civic reforms that might have actually stopped him — tighter gun control and an effective mental health safety net — won’t materialize even now".
On “Meet the Press” last Sunday [Representative Trent Franks, Republican of Arizona] implored us to “treat each other as fellow children of God” without acknowledging (or being questioned about) his 2009 diatribe branding Obama as “an enemy of humanity.”
“Of the many truths in President Obama’s powerful Tucson speech, none was more indisputable than his statement that no one can know what is in a killer’s mind. So why have we spent so much time debating exactly that?The answer is classic American denial. It was easier to endlessly parse Jared Lee Loughner’s lunatic library — did he favor “The Communist Manifesto” or Ayn Rand? — than confront the larger and harsher snapshot of our current landscape that emerged after his massacre. A week on, that denial is becoming even more entrenched. As soon as the president left the podium Wednesday night, we started shifting into our familiar spin-dry post-tragedy cycle of the modern era — speedy “closure,” followed by a return to business as usual, followed by national amnesia”.
"If we learn nothing from this tragedy, we are back where we started".
"Service before self"
"You are nothing, your nation is everything"
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Monday, January 10, 2011
The former Home Secretary was accused of trying to "stereotype a whole community" after he suggested that some Pakistani men in Britain saw white girls as "easy meat".
"An attack on one who serves is an attack on all who serve. Acts and threats of violence against public officials have no place in our society".
"Some politicians expressed hope that the killing spree would serve as a wake-up call at a time when the political climate has become so emotionally charged".
"The suspect's exact motivation was not clear, but a former classmate described Laugher as a pot-smoking loner who had rambling beliefs about the world".
Sunday, January 09, 2011
Stephen Colbert: "The enlightened, modern person usually measures the progress of civilization by discerning how well its members look after their comrades".The problem is the mixed economy and socialism do not actually treat people very well. This is a myth; it merely purports to. There are several reasons why it fails to:
"Altruism can fairly be described as an invention of human beings"
"Christian axiom to "love thy neighbor as thyself" or the socialist dictum requiring "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need," altruism is widely considered the progressive, humane stance".