How the belief in equality prevents people from understanding the realities of power

Canadian columnist George Jonas says that even if a majority of Muslims wanted peace with Israel, peace is not a possibility for the foreseeable future, because the dominant mood in the Muslim world, the prevailing wind, the most vociferous voices, are not for peace with Israel, but for the destruction of Israel. It is not the majority’s desire that matters, but who has the most intense desire. Thus, Jonas concludes, “moderate Muslims are inconsequential.”

This is a fundamental point that applies to many issues. I’ve used it often against neoconservatives on the immigration issue. The neocons will say, “Most immigrants don’t want multiculturalism.” I answer, “Even if what you’re saying is true, it’s not ‘most’ that counts, it’s the elite that counts.” As obvious as this may seem to people with a modicum of common sense, it is hard for modern, democracy-oriented, poll-driven intellectuals to understand. Being liberals, they think that all people are equal, and therefore that all people’s opinions are of equal importance, and therefore that the majority opinion within a group expresses that group’s true tendency. In reality, a minority that has conviction, passion, or, obviously, power on its side is more important than a majority that merely has opinion on its side. Throughout history, battles have been won by the army that had fewer men, but more belief in the rightness of their cause. Every Sunday, football games are won, not by the team that has the better stats, but by the team that has the greater will to win, a.k.a. The Force. These basic realities of human existence are invisible to liberals and neoconservatives, who live in a dessicated world where nothing is real except abstract slogans.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 23, 2009 10:30 AM | Send

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