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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Might Makes Right: Undisguised Lust for Power

"Justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger." Thrasymachus.

I'm a "Might Makes Right" kinda guy (which is what my man Thrasy is trying to say in the quote above).  Not that I'm personally mighty (definitely not). Rather it's that when I observe behaviors and actions by living entities (and even some non-living entities), I can virtually always trace those behaviors and actions to some fundamental source of Might.  My observations align very closely with Nietzsche's "will-to-power" musings.

To accrue power, the potential accruer usually needs to disguise the fact that power is what they're after.  The accruer can't usually say, "I want more power - give it to me" and hope for a positive outcome.  Therefore, the basis of most political interactions is for the potential accruer of political power to lie through his teeth and say, "I want to do all these wonderful things and make life better for you. All you have to do is give me power.  Really, you can't do it without me. Trust me."

However, there have been a number of recent events where the power grab was surprisingly undisguised.

Calling for Zimmerman to be locked up, whether guilty or innocent, Daily Beast columnist Mansfield Frazier writes:
"America can only dodge so many racial bullets, and a not-guilty verdict in this case could very easily turn the racial cold war into a very hot one."
That's not very well disguised Mr. Frazier.  You want the power to put whitey (or rather someone not-black) behind bars just because you say so. Or else!  Between Mr. Frazier, the New Black Panthers who put a bounty on Zimmerman's head, and a number of others in the black community, this is a blatant threat-of-violence based attempted grab for power.

However, a much larger power grab was allegedly successful during the last presidential election:
The black Dems were caught stuffing the ballot boxes in Philly and Ohio as reported the night of the election and Sen. McCain chose not to fight. [...]

After discussions with his inner circle, which explains the delay in his speech, McCain decided not to pursue the voter fraud in PA and Ohio, despite his staff's desire to make it an issue. He said no. Staff felt they could get a federal injunction to stop the process. McCain felt the crowds assembled in support of Obama and such would be detrimental to our country and it would do our nation no good for this to drag out like last go around, coupled with the possibility of domestic violence.
If true (and skepticism is certainly called for), that's quite a power grab (though keep in mind that Obama still would've won without Ohio and Pennsylvania).  I've been wondering why polls show Obama and Romney neck-and-neck (which should be a bad omen for Obama at this point in the campaign cycle), yet shows a steady 60% chance of Obama being re-elected.  The explanation might be that Romney may well win the election by legitimate votes cast, but lose it when all the votes (legitimate and otherwise) are counted.

Might makes right and he who controls the ballot box, controls the election.  Then he gets to decide what's right.


erp said...

Things have always been politicized to some extent, but the Clintons perfected the notion and now everything boils down to who you are and which part of the glorious rainbow you have been shoved into (sorry for the tortuous syntax).

A-Team people aka as those with political power get special treatment, not on the A-Team -- be prepared to get Zimmermaned.

Susan's Husband said...


Then there are prosecutions like the one against former Senator Ted Stevens which I cannot at this point see as other that a pure power grab.

The one hopeful sign is that the American Street seems to grasp this at some level, hence the massive up-cannoning on the Street in the current gun purchasing spree. I'm getting armed myself and know several local friends doing the same. Outside of the blue hells, mob violence is not going to work very well for the MALists. One suspects this is precisely why the MAL has been so gung ho on gun control.

erp said...

Funny you mention guns. Neither my husband nor I have ever handled a gun or even seen one other than in pictures or museums and such, but a friend is pressuring us to consider it. We live in a working class little town in central Florida peopled until recently by what would be derisively called by the left red necks aka ordinary hard working people, but latterly because of Section 8 housing we are becoming overrun by welfare types and their offspring hanging around in front the supermarket, aimlessly wandering around residential areas and fighting with surfers at the beach.

This won’t end well, especially because the keystone kops here are with good reason afraid of the newcomers – and Harry, before you jump to conclusions, almost all our freeloaders/guests are as white as you are and much as Obama et al. would like to make this racial, it ain’t and the class warfare card won’t work either because the workers and the shirkers are of the same class – only difference is one group has self-respect and pride and the other has an EBT card.

As for security, we’ve gone as far as locking the doors even during the day, installing pad locks on the gates and motion detector lights for what that’s worth, but guns? Perhaps after Obama is re-elected, the notion will become more appealing, but I haven’t totally given up on the wisdom of We, the People … yet.

Bret said...

aog wrote: "...mob violence is not going to work very well for the MALists..."

Except that it's very asymmetric. You shoot someone in a mob while trying to defend yourself and you'll get Zimmermanned. You get a bounty on your head by the new black panthers and eventually get taken down. Nobody in the mob gets prosecuted. I don't see how you win.

The 2nd part of the asymmetry is that you simply have more to lose than they do and everybody knows it.

Susan's Husband said...

Even Zimmerman might survive. And I would rather be Zimmermanned than watch a mob get violent with my self or my family. Ultimately mob violence is the violence of cowards and if there is real resistance where mob members might actually get hurt or killed you'll see a lot less of it.

Bret said...

Clearly, being armed gives you choices if a mob is threatening or being violent with your family or self.

Zimmerman had a really tough decision to make (maybe, depending on the exact circumstances). If you believe his story (and I have no reason not to believe it, but I'm always skeptical of everything in case you haven't noticed), then his choice was let Martin continue beating him, possibly to the point of being unconscious, possibly to the point of dying, or shooting Martin at point blank range with a high likelihood of severely injuring and/or killing him and then having to live (if things go well) with a very bad aftermath. Even if found innocent and even if not assassinated, I bet it'll be tough for Zimmerman to get over the trauma of having killed someone.

There were no good choices for Zimmerman, hopefully he chose the least bad one.

Bret said...


I can relate to your gun thoughts. I don't own any guns nor is it likely that I get one anytime soon. On the other hand, I at least had the opportunity to shoot 22s at summer camp so I know which end is which.

I'm planning on getting my daughters some gun training though. The older one is interested and probably at a pretty decent age for that sort of thing. Not that I think she should get a gun. Rather I think that everybody should know at least a minimal amount about gun safety and operation.

Hey Skipper said...

Then there are prosecutions like the one against former Senator Ted Stevens which I cannot at this point see as other that a pure power grab.

By whom, for what?

IIRC, the prosecution was started under Bush II, and Stevens was a Republican.

Regardless of what the prosecution did -- which was easily bad enough -- one of the things I learned in the military was that avoiding the appearance of impropriety was just as important as the impropriety itself.

Even if Stevens was completely innocent, he failed in that regard.

Outside of the blue hells, mob violence is not going to work very well for the MALists.

There will be no replay of the London riots here.

erp said...

Skipper, why do you think there won't be riots here especially if Obama is defeated, not likely, but not impossible either?

I fear that so much money is available in the slush fund that used to be our money, it's very likely that there will be armed crazies running wild in the streets.

Bret, I agree that everyone should be comfortable around guns and know how to shoot one, but it's too late for me.

Now that you remind me, our younger son had a BB gun, but the first time he went hunting, he killed a rabbit and it so turned him off, he gave it to his cousin who became a SWAT team cop in the NYPD.

You are so right in your comment elsewhere about the words racist and racism. They have been rendered meaningless. Thank you President Obama for that service to our country.

Bret said...

Susan's Husband wrote: "Outside of the blue hells, mob violence is not going to work very well for the MALists"

Don't you live in a blue hell?

I agree that's where the mobs will riot. It's where they always riot. They never could get away with that sort of thing in, say, most of Texas.

But it provides the media with more footage that will allow yet more hand-wringing about racism and more calls from the blue hells for more federal oversight of just about everything since the federal government is pretty much one giant blue hell.

Susan's Husband said...


By careerists at the DoJ. Also, the more I read, the more I think the appearance of impropriety was faked up as well. Similar case - Sarah Palin.


"Don't you live in a blue hell?"

No, I live downstate. Outside of Chicago, Illinois is basically Indiana.

Hey Skipper said...

Skipper, why do you think there won't be riots here especially if Obama is defeated ...

Several reasons.

Most importantly, our justice system seems incapable of understanding the recurrent nagging that "prison populations are increasing even as crime is going down." In contrast, the British justice has long since become captured by the intelligentsia (if there was ever a word needing scare quotes, that is it). Criminals are coddled, and require multiple convictions before they will do even minimal time.

In the UK, self-defense is practically against the law.

And, to make matters worse, possessing any means of practical self defense certainly is.

I suppose it is just possible that there could be some blue-hell rioting, but there are few places in the US anymore were there aren't enough gun owners to give the violence prone pause.

Justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger.

Another way to look at it is that Justice is the resolution of the Hobbesian dilemma, possible only with a strong government. In many, if not all cases, the "stronger" is the government, and its role is to disinterestedly arbitrate between parties regardless of their relative strength.

Bret said...

hey skipper wrote: "...the "stronger" is the government, and its role is to disinterestedly arbitrate between parties regardless of their relative strength..."

That would be the theory, but in practice? Disinterested? Have you not heard of lobbyists? Lawyers? Bribes? Corruption?

It looks to me like the "strong" (in this case the wily and ruthless) hijack government so that they have huge advantage over everyone else.

Susan's Husband said...


That's why I am a minarchist because what you outline is a variant of the prisoner's dilemma. Only by a rigid policy of "no, you just can't do that" toward the government can prevent its capture by the strong. And yet so many who champion the weak want a stronger government. While many are just power mongers with a good story, I think the majority don't actually understand this point.

erp said...

Skipper, what you say might still be true to some extent today, but as we see in the Zimmerman travesty, those who try to defend themselves are being targeted by the very people whom we've elected to uphold the law and it is the fondest dream of lefties that we go all the way of the U.K. and become frightened euroweenies cowering in our homes while lawless mobs burn and pillage.

The real question to me is whether when the riots come, the military and national guard will or will not fire on We, the People. Three years ago, I would have said never! But now I'm not so sure.