17 July 2005

Moral equivalence and fascism

Harry's Place has an excellent post looking at moral equivalence and fascism, two issues that should always be forefront in our minds as we deal with fanaticism.


Kate said...

I think it's really a shame that the word "fascism" has been so misused. Tom Friedman has almost single-handedly turned it into a meaningless term. The Islamic fanatics who are blowing themselves up to kill others are not fascists. A quick glance at any decent dictionary proves this.

What I hate most about moral equivalency is that it has to be one or the other: to be against Bush means you are for the terrorists, or vice versa. I'm actually against both. I think Bush's policies are tragically flawed. They have led to literally countless deaths (we have no idea how many Iraqis have been killed). On the other hand, the Islamic fundamentalists are completely crazy. I don't think they're driven by political goals, though who knows. Religious fanaticism combined with bloodlust can turn people into heartless killers.

Religious fanatics are the most dangerous people in the world. What scares me about Bush is that he also follows a fundamentalist religion. Our Christian fundamentalists aren't blowing themselves up, but they are asking their sons and daughters to risk being blown up for an unjust war. Some of our troops are putting biblical sayings on the sides of their tanks. I wonder where that's coming from.

I'd guess that if Orwell were alive today he'd be horrified by the Islamic fanatics and troubled by the Bush administration. He would see religion gone out of control in the fanatics and worry about the rise of fascist, Christian capitalism under Bush.

Frankly, I refuse to choose between them. I want us to eliminate fanaticism and also change presidents. How does that sound?

Karlo said...

Sounds great! I also get tired of people on the right insinuating that the only two leadership choices this world offers is Osama and Shrub. It's sad because plutocrats with fascist tendencies and fundamentailist terrorists actually provide each other with a raison d'etre.