How do the rest of you feel about the forming of a new Iraq?

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How do the rest of you feel about the forming of a new Iraq?

Postby Josh the Aspie on Sat Apr 26, 2003 9:12 am

As I watch the news, it seems to me today that most of the plans being made for IRaq, most of the coments made by the experts and the pundits... seem like my entier country (The United States of America BTW) is filled with Hubris. I have heard little about the concerns of the Iraqi people, and very little of the talk seems to be centered about what might be best for the Iraqi people, but instead what different nations want, and who should be the people guiding and diciding the path of the Iraqi people. I would think the answer would be that the Iraqi people (by no means idiots) should be guiding their own paths.

And certainly as I have said, I beleive that all Iraqi's should have a say in their govermnet... but plans to force a democracy on them seem to me to be... premature. A representative republic (which has come to be called a democracy) is not always the best answer for a people. And indeed, the sudden freedom from the Iraqi regiem, placed directly in the hands of the masses may promote more harm than good. I recognise that the people have a right to have a say in their government. Further, it may not even be the governmental system they as a people would perfer.

Unfortunatly, as I point my fingers at these things that seem to be glairing problems to me, I have no better solution to offer, and no idea who I would be offering the solution to did I have it.

I was wondering how the rest of you felt.
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Postby Kanaeda Kuonji on Mon Apr 28, 2003 3:29 pm

The US Government has way too much ego in going about it.

On the one hand, we must see to it that rule by the people is just that: rule by the people.

On the other, we must protect against the Tyranny of the Majority (most lawyers know the concept from Constitutional law). Care must be especially taken to prevent the formation of a theocracy.

Those who suffered under Saddam must not become monsters themselves, and thus far, efforts of prevention have failed miserably.
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Postby Silver Adept on Tue Apr 29, 2003 7:44 am

Is it possible to put in a provincial government, one with elected leaders but world oversight to ensure economic recoveries and a stable infrastructure before letting the people open up full-throttle? If the government and the people don't get it right, there's still someone around to correct them before letting them run away with it...
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Postby NR Pax on Wed Apr 30, 2003 4:48 am

I doubt that any solution is gonig to work in that region. Between different religious groups and tribal affiliations, I have no confidence that there is going to be anything in Iraq other than business as usual.

And I disagree with Josh's statement; I have heard a lot of concern about the Iraqi people. Most of the people there seem to appreciate it contrary to the news reports.
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Postby BandMan2K on Mon Aug 04, 2003 9:41 am

It is true that the paths for prosperity and destruction are running practically side by side, but I do believe that a democracy might not be the best thing.

There is the usurped King that could reinstall his throne.
Or the Religious Clerics to create one like in Iran.

These are only ideas, not solutions.

The true answer is that as much as we want to say Yes or No about the plans, we have nowhere near the knowledge and ability as those that are trying to do stuff right now for the new Government. Governments rise and fall, but the people will make the decision.

I say leave it up to them and just leave.
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Postby Silver Adept on Tue Aug 05, 2003 5:34 am

And if they self-destruct, what then?
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Postby scooby two on Fri Sep 12, 2003 11:37 am

You can get yourself into a bit of a tangle charging someone with hubris. Literally it means that someone has declared himself above the law of the gods. You would then have to show how it is you know what the law of the gods is.

Maybe you can rephrase your criticism in more concrete terms. For example, you might want to see if there's something more specific in a recent interview with Rumsfeld. (It's a good interview to read either way.)

In the meantime, the WSJ, with American Enterprise Institute and Zogby did one of the first scientific polls in Iraq. (What Iraqis Really Think, 2003-09-10)

I don't want to repost the entire thing (it's fairly detailed) due to copyright, but:

[i]Conducted in August, our survey was necessarily limited in scope, but
it reflects a nationally representative sample of Iraqi views, as
captured in four disparate cities: Basra (Iraq's second largest, home
to 1.7 million people, in the far south), Mosul (third largest, far
north), Kirkuk (Kurdish-influenced oil city, fourth largest) and Ramadi
(a resistance hotbed in the Sunni triangle). The results show that the
Iraqi public is more sensible, stable and moderate than commonly
portrayed, and that Iraq is not so fanatical, or resentful of the U.S.,
after all.
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Postby Josh the Aspie on Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:19 am

I think that maybe I should clarify a few things.

First of all, I don't mean that I hadn't heard allot of concern for Iraq, even when I posted that original post. What I meant was that at the point in time, I had heard -more- about the negotiations over who would be handling what in the Iraqi reconstruction, and about what the different nations where vying for, including agendas to be pursued, than I had about how the Iraqi people where holding up. In addition, it was rare to hear 'experts' on shows talking about what might be best for the Iraqi people, rather than telling what different nations where vying for. Admittedly, I hadn't watched as much as some people, but I did watch a fair amount.

Since that point, the theme of what I have seen of the media coverage of Iraq seems to have shifted heavily in the direction of what might be best for Iraq, and what was being done to aid Iraq, which I find very encouraging.

Secondly, I did not mean Hubris according to the strict, original Greek meaning, but rather in the generalized meaning, synonymous with having pride or confidence in extreme, and possibly dangerous amounts.

However, according to the conversation between Euthyphro and Plato, "...the same things are considered just by some gods, and unjust by others, and as they dispute about these things they are at odds and at war with each other."

In the Illiad, many servants of a specific deity, who obeyed the laws of that deity did not obey the edicts of other deities.

So even with the stricter definition of Hubris, there is vagueness, such that two 'proofs' by the Greek method can contradict one another.

However, this second is merely a tangent, and I don't believe or put faith in the Greek pantheon of gods. ^^;;;
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Media, hubris and such

Postby scooby two on Fri Oct 31, 2003 12:20 pm

Josh the Aspie wrote:I think that maybe I should clarify a few things.

First of all, I don't mean that I hadn't heard allot of concern for Iraq, even when I posted that original post. What I meant was that at the point in time, I had heard -more- about the negotiations over who would be handling what in the Iraqi reconstruction, and about what the different nations where vying for, including agendas to be pursued, than I had about how the Iraqi people where holding up. In addition, it was rare to hear 'experts' on shows talking about what might be best for the Iraqi people, rather than telling what different nations where vying for. Admittedly, I hadn't watched as much as some people, but I did watch a fair amount.


It's pretty hard to make generalizations about the media because we're naturally biased to our favorite sources. I, personally, don't watch much television coverage because I don't own a television and because there's no way to dig deeper into a particular story. I've been spoiled by the 'net, I guess.

Still, I'd argue that on the face of it the concern we express towards Iraqis will never appear to be equivalent to the concern we express towards our own. There is a good reason for this: we recognize that people who are not in our group are fully capable human beings. We will certainly help them especially to rectify any damages we have caused, but they're not children and it would be an active injustice to treat them as such. The underlying truth is that they are our equals and thus will thrive when faced with adversity.

So even with the stricter definition of Hubris, there is vagueness, such that two 'proofs' by the Greek method can contradict one another.

However, this second is merely a tangent, and I don't believe or put faith in the Greek pantheon of gods. ^^;;;


My point was more that when you invoke hubris you're predicting an inevitable downfall and you're speaking to an inherent defect in the character of the subject of your assertion. It manifests as extreme pride, certainly, but that's the symptom: hubris refers to the "disease".

Hubris is certainly recognized by the Abrahamic religions (thou shalt have no gods before me, etc.) and from what little I know, Hindi religions would also acknowledge such flaws of character. The genius of the early Greeks was the universal nature of their ideas.

I think, though, that hubris is something you'd want to consider in a post-mortem. It's forthright to call a knave a knave, but while he's in office it's both just and expeditious to suspend judgment of his deeper character while you address the specifics of his agenda and offer your own remedies. Bush's opponents don't offer much positive to offset the hellfire they throw at the man.
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