Thursday, June 16, 2005

Liberals Don't Understand Militant Muslims. Why?

Let me clarify this. Many liberals. Liberals like Senator Lieberman and Ed Koch understand the situation pretty well.

Karl Marx was not all wrong. Am I really saying that? Absolutely.

Marx understood clearly that people derive a sense of value and worth to their work and jobs. And when they became mere cogs in a machine, people lost a sense of self-worth. Unfortunately, Marx's lack of understanding of human nature prevented him from postulating an adequate solution to this problem.

Marx, because of childhood experiences, viewed everything in terms of economics. His father was an Orthodox Jew. When the family moved to a predominately Lutheran area, his father converted because it would be better for business. Marx began to see everything in terms of economics.

Socialism and communism eventually, over time, took root. And while they are able to explain a lot, ultimately they fall short. And they fall short because they fall short in their understanding people.

Liberals, who are the most influenced by this type of thinking, view so much of life in terms of class struggle, rich and poor. And while this can explain a lot, it doesn't explain everything. If some people are bad actors, it must be because they don't have enough money or were born with a disadvantage rooted in economics. Most of you can probably see the error of this thinking. Sometimes people are just plain bad.

So you will hear a lot about the root causes of terrorism. By that, 9 times out of 10 means poverty. And yes, many in the Middle East are poor. But a lot of the Al Queda people come from middle class backgrounds. Heck, Osama bin Ladin is tremedously wealthy.

A number of times I've tried to explain how certain beliefs in Islam (beyond the example set by Muhammad) have contributed to "everyone hating us." But such thinking from a generally secular sector of society falls on deaf ears. Their thinking on relgion is either a) how dare you say any religion is deficient. That will lead to violence. or b) Relgion just generally lead to violence, so Christianity is no better than Islam.

There is also a historical pattern to blame America for a lot on the Left. Some fair. A lot which is not so fair.

So if radical Muslims are bad it must be because they are 1) poor, 2) religious in general (you can't point a finger at anything specific in Islam or in Middle East culture) 3) reacting to something we've done so we have to change.

So now we have many middle-class (and above) devout Muslims who believe that Islam should be spread, violently if need be, and negative Western influence should be purged (which is impossible with today's media technologies unless you destroy the West). So you can't stop militant Islam by eradicating poverty (although that would probably help in Palestine). There is not much policy-wise you can change unless you pretty much become Muslim.

Plus, being spineless generally only makes things worse. Once you show weakness (like calling Gitmo a gulag) you embolden terrorists and help them in their recruiting. An entire book could be written on this point. Needlessly to say, American weakness from Reagan's retreat in Beirut to Clinton's abandonment of Moguidishu (I hope I spelled that correctly) to not responding to the Cole bombing emboldened terrorists and helped create the situation we find ourselves in today.

Lastly, secularists and Muslims share one pertinent thing in common. Both do not believe in original sin. So they believe people are born good or at least OK and are corrupted at a later date. Well, if you have the wrong diagnosis, the possibility of you having the correct solution isn't very likely.

I think it's "Mogadishu"...Chris J.
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