aefenglommung (aefenglommung) wrote,
aefenglommung
aefenglommung

Thinking at the keyboard

I am old enough to remember when the Cold War had some very hot moments -- like, say, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the early negotiations over nuclear weapons which hammered out the rationale of Mutual Assured Destruction.

The reason the Cold War never went into real, hot war is because the Soviets were only playing crazy. Down deep, they wanted to live and prosper just like everyone does. If they couldn't bully us, then they'd just live in competition with us (or parity with us, sort of "keeping up with the Joneses") -- until Ronald Reagan spent them into oblivion.

But the Islamic fundamentalists are genuinely crazy. They're not playing. That makes them far more dangerous than the old Soviets ever were. And the governments which "ride the tiger" by providing rhetorical support or a blind eye to nefarious doings are playing with fire.

Are they "evil?" Some is, some ain't. But they're all crazy. So how do you handle crazy people?

Well, 1) you secure your own house and take measures to prevent the crazies from getting to you.

2) You don't set out to rile them, BUT you must call things by their right names. You must not enter their craziness and try to match their mind games. You must call good and evil by their right names. And you must not let them define how you live. You cannot work with crazy people by trying to soothe them in the hope that they won't act crazy. Crazy people, be definition, act crazy. You must be prepared to act normal.

3) If the crazy person -- or group -- or nation -- comes at you with a weapon, you stop him/them. If that means they die, that's too bad. But at least others won't die because you didn't stop them. Some crazy people will stop and reconsider when they see such results. Others will go ahead and be stopped/killed/thrown in prison. Either way, they're stopped. And the world is a little bit saner for that.
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  • Point of view in LOTR

    One of the achievements of The Lord of the Rings is its complicated narrative architecture. Stories are interlaced and we follow, now this sub-plot,…

  • Arthur contra mundum

    The consensus opinion among Tolkien critics -- including those who greatly admire his work -- is that The Lord of the Rings is slow to get going,…

  • Not all ancient institutions are good

    The institutions of the Roman Republic have cast a long shadow over western government. Even our Founders paid close attention to the Roman model,…