the main goal of all political actors, particularly violent right wing ones, is almost always to make themselves more powerful than their rivals in their own country. They are trying to beat their "enemies" on their own "side." However, they always always always claim they're it doing for everyone in their tribe. (Meanwhile, their counterparts on the other "side" make up a mirror image fantasy to make themselves more powerful than their own domestic "enemies.")We'd all like to believe that our leaders are noble enough - or at least, not despicable enough - to use foreign policy for their own short-sighted needs. Now, I didn't approve of Stephen Harper's use of the vote on Afghanistan, but it really pales in comparison to what Bush and the GOP have done in the US. Hopefully, the institutions of Canadian democracy are strong enough to keep Stevie on the less-crooked and narrower path.
Thus, Bush invades Iraq because he thinks it will help him crush the Democrats. Osama bin Laden kills thousands on 9/11 because he thinks it will help him crush his Muslim rivals. But rather than being honest—"I'm doing this because I think it'll really be great for ME!"—Bush, bin Laden and the Iranian mullahs all claim they did it to protect their "people."
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
It's all so domestic
Jon Schwarz at TinyRevolution: