The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Revisiting the chads

Back in 2000, I was living in the land of the Hanging Chad. Even before the insanity that began to unfold on election day in that year, I could see chaos coming. Not clearly, of course, only oracles do that, it seems. But I had a sense of foreboding. It seemed to me that both sides were ratcheting up the rhetoric way beyond what I had seen in the past.

During the Clinton years, I had occasion to run into a foaming at the mouth, hard core, redneck anti-Clintonite. He had a propaganda tape about Clinton that made my jaw drop. I would have been just as rabid as he if I had believed even half of what was on that tape. Instead, I was puzzled why anyone would believe this stuff.

I listened to talk radio, both conservative and liberal. Both sides were being extreme, it seemed to me. They were treating the upcoming election as if it was a choice between the Messiah and the Anti-Christ. It was like we were preparing to elect a dictator for life. It was, in my mind, widespread insanity in the making.

And, I think, I was right. It did become widespread insanity. To this day, people feel that the election was stolen. If it was, it was done so cleverly that it has escaped detection for a decade. Not that I don't think elections can be stolen, they can. And have been. But national ones? I don't think so. There are way too many variables, too much complexity, too many places things can go wrong, for any scheme to succeed. It would have required too many people and all of these people would have had to keep their mouths shut for too many years.

Its like all conspiracy theories. It all comes down to a sort of faith. A belief that complex schemes of a grand scale can remain hidden for many, many years. I point to the Watergate scandal of the Nixon era. It wasn't even a year before it unraveled. Within 2 years, Nixon resigned in disgrace. He didn't have advance knowledge of the Watergate break-in, he just tried to cover up the links to the White House. That failed almost immediately. And at the highest levels. John Dean, in particular, exposed the cover up for what it was.

The problem with a conspiracy is exemplified by the old saying "Two can keep a secret if one of them is dead." The more players in a conspiracy, the less likely it will succeed and the less likely a successful one will not be exposed.

So, for all those that believe that WTC attacks had been committed with the knowledge of the government, or were committed by the government, or were made worse by the government, I think you're nuts. This would include my otherwise intelligent brother. Too many people would have to have been involved, too many people would have had to have no conscience and/or no propensity for greed, too many people would have had to be "eliminated" after the fact.

These things work in movie plots but they don't work in real life. Even in those movies, the scheme is exposed at some point. Conspiracy theories make for good entertainment, though, and we (the public) seem to eat them up... along with the popcorn.

No comments: