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December 06, 2003

Comments

ellie

Covetousness, or acquisitiveness, is basic to human nature, I believe. I suppose the Biblical injunction against covetousness is an acknowledgement of that basic truth.
Communism and socialism, through state-enforced property seizures and redistribution, actually aggravate human acquisitiveness leading to bloodbaths and totalitarianism. What Stalinism, Nazism, hard leftism, hard rightism, and radical Islamism have in common is solidarity based in part at least, on scapegoats, ‘imperialist’ Americans, Jews, whatever, who can be made ‘responsible’ for internal political defects; blaming others for our problems is very human too.

Bran

We could not agree with you more, as below snippet from "Eric Hobsbawm and Trocaire" (www.blog-irish.com/hobsbawm.htm shows:

"Mr Hobsbawm still hasn't left "the Party", and still thinks that forced collectivisation, which Stalin cheerfully told Churchill cost 10 million lives, would not have been a bad idea even if 15 to 20 million had died, if only Stalin's theories had worked out better.

"How can an allegedly brilliant man spend 91 years of his life getting it so wrong?

"Burke's line "Nothing can be conceived more hard than the heart of a thorough-bred metaphysician" is not our motto for nothing.

"It is simply highly improbable that any one man, one Party, one theory, will get everything exactly right - sufficiently right to warrant starving ten to twenty million people to implement the theory. Those brilliant "meta-physicians" are Vonnegut's lurching machines, missing one cog. Their prescriptions are disaster.

"The Christian church listed pride as the first of the deadly sins. And the intellectual pride of taking the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was the first sin in Genesis.

"The politically correct see this as an infringement on freedom of inquiry.

"The second in both the list of deadly sins and Genesis was envy - the story of Cain and Abel.

"The bien pensant see this - God's arbitrary acceptance of Abel's sacrifice and rejection of Cain's - as injustice.

"Mix the two - pride and envy - and you have a very deadly combination: a self-appointed "vanguard" struggling to impose "justice" on behalf of the "masses - or the "developing world".

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