A General Theory of Just About Everything

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13 Responses

  1. Joel Rich says:

    THE CONTINUED EXISTENCE OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE has always posed an insolvable problem for materialists of every stripe, from Toynbee to Marx, and caused them to rail against the Jews.
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    WADR and without comment on the rest of your article, I sincerely doubt that our anti-materialist (halevai we really acted on this somewhat more today out of conviction) philosophy is a major cause of railing.
    KT

  2. Seth Gordon says:

    Why do Western societies inevitably tend towards appeasement?

    There was a news item a few days ago reporting that Pakistan, our ally in the War on Terror, had signed a truce with the Taliban operating in the regions bordering on Pakistan. Is Pakistan a “Western society”?

  3. sarah elias says:

    Yah, well. Pakistan is not a Western society; OTOH, neither is it one of our staunchest allies. In fact, I would venture a guess that public opinion in Pakistan is rather more pro-Taliban than pro-U.S. So maybe that agreement was more a recognition of that than appeasement. Hmmm?

  4. sarah shapiro says:

    What a great piece

  5. Seth Gordon says:

    Indeed, one probable motive for Pakistan’s truce with the Taliban is that a lot of people in Pakistan, especially in the security services, sympathize with the Taliban.

    And one clear motive for Chamberlain’s appeasement of the Nazis at Munich was that most Britons at the time sympathized with the Germans–they believed that the Treaty of Versailles was unfair to Germany.

    (For more on appeasement of Hitler, the circumstances surrounding it, and comparisons to present-day circumstances, I recommend this monograph by a professor at that liberal sinkhole, the Army War College.)

    Another example that has nothing to do with the West or with Islam: In 2002, the members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the People’s Republic of China signed a declaration agreeing to only use peaceful means to resolve the five-way territorial dispute over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. Was this appeasement? (Although with all the overlapping claims and various military maneuvers going on there, it’s not clear to me who was appeasing whom…)

    Look, every country in the world has interests and ambitions that conflict with some other country or some militia group. No country is willing to throw all of its military resources behind every one of those ambitions. Any time a country chooses to compromise on one of its interests instead of going to war, that can be described as appeasement.

    So I am thoroughly unconvinced that Western societies are more likely to appease than other ones.

    (And even if it’s true, that doesn’t necessarily make it a bad thing. One can argue that a particular act of appeasement was a bad strategic move, but even Churchill said that “appeasement in itself may be good or bad according to the circumstances”. Reagan was accused of appeasement for cutting an arms-reduction deal with Gorbachev, but no harm seemed to come from that.)

  6. Bob Miller says:

    You only appease those you love?

  7. David S. says:

    You know, this is a very well written piece, with many good points. It is also the only article I’ve ever read from the Watcher’s Council that didn’t have any intelligent comments that supported the thesis of the article. It’s weird. Do only disagreeable people comment here?

    This was good stuff, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, especially if they criticize without introducing an alternative theory. Keep it up.

  1. September 13, 2006

    Submitted for Your Approval…

    First off…  any spambots reading this should immediately go here, here, here,  and here.  Die spambots, die!  And now…  here are all the links submitted by members of the Watcher’s Council for this week’s vote. Council li…

  2. September 15, 2006

    The Council Has Spoken!…

    First off…  any spambots reading this should immediately go here, here, here,  and here.  Die spambots, die!  And now…  the winning entries in the Watcher’s Council vote for this week are Your Chance of Dying in a Terroris…

  3. September 15, 2006

    […] The winning non-Council post was Villainous Company’s post, “And At Night, I Dream of You…”. For second place non-Council post there was an extraordinary four-way tie with TMH’s Bacon Bits’s post, “Ten Reasons Why the West Will Lose the War on Terror (the pessimist’s view)”, Greetings from the French Hill’s “Countdown to 9/11: My Days with the Dead”, The Belmont Club’s, “The Shadow of Our Hand”, and Cross Currents’s “A General Theory of Just About Everything”. […]

  4. September 16, 2006

    The Council Has Spoken:…

    This week, most of the nominated posts, not surprisingly, were related to the 5th Anniversary of 9/11. The winning Council post was by Matt Barr, at Socratic Rhythm Method. In Your chance of dying in a terrorist attack, he pointed…

  5. September 18, 2006

    Watcher’s Council Results…

    Results are in — and a pair of excellent posts were the winners in this week’s voting by the Watcher’s Council. The winning entries in the Watcher’s Council vote for this week are Your Chance of Dying in a Terrorist……

  6. September 28, 2006

    […] 2. (tie) “A General Theory of Just About Everything” by Crosscurrents. […]

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