Yet another opinionator who thinks that America literally rules the world and is responsible for the acts of all governments

Someone named Mohamad Bazzi writes in the New York Daily News:

Riots in Egypt: President Obama must choose between support of Hosni Mubarak and protesters’ cause

As protests spread against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, the Obama administration faces a choice: which side of history does it want to be on?

Does the United States want to support a dictator to the end, or does it stand with protesters demanding relief from decades of emergency rule, police torture, corruption and economic stagnation?

Crazy. Short of a condition of U.S. war or quasi-war with Egypt or of U.S. imperial rule or occupation of Egypt, none of which exists, the president of the United States does not have a say in determining who governs Egypt. Egypt determines who governs Egypt. By Bazzi’s logic, every time a government is challenged anywhere in the world, whether by street protesters or simply by an opposing political party, the U.S. must declare whether it supports that government or wants it removed. That is not the proper role of the United States or of any country in relation to the affairs of another. This Bazzi individual sounds like the New York Times which describes Mubarak’s government as “American-backed” and makes America responsible for all the evils putatively committed by Mubarak’s government simply by virtue of the fact that the U.S. recognizes the existence of Mubarak’s government and deals with it.

Unfortunately the Times/Bazzi delusion was fed for seven years by the George W. Bush administration and much of the American “conservative” media, which constantly used language implying that the messiah from West Texas was the ultimate authority for all governments in the world.

The downside of the neoconservative argument that America should rule the world for the sake of democracy (advanced most explicitly by the “conservative” pundit Charles Krauthammer in his 2005 article “The Neoconservative Convergence”) is that America, as the supposed ruler of the world, becomes guilty for any bad thing committed by any country anywhere. Thus, just as neoconservative universalism leads logically and immediately to leftist multiculturalism, neoconservative “pro-Americanism” leads logically and immediately to leftist anti-Americanism.


” … just as neoconservative universalism leads logically and immediately to leftist multiculturalism … “

What I mean by that, as explained by me for many years starting in National Review in 1992 and 1994, is that the neoconservative belief that all human beings are basically the same and can assimilate into America justifies the mass importation into America of non-Western peoples who in reality are very different from us and who, as soon as they arrive, begin asserting their differences and demanding that they be respected and recognized. Meanwhile the neoconservatives, still insisting that all people are the same, never acknowledge that it was their own, “pro-American,” universalism that led to the anti-American multiculturalism that they oppose. And over time they oppose it more and more weakly, until they quietly sign on to “diversity” as the essence of America.

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Timothy A. writes:

When it comes to anti-American bigotry, Lew Rockwell takes a backseat to no one. According to libertarian Lew, Egypt is not just American-backed, it is part of the Arab oil sector of the American empire.

Furthermore, in Lew-land, U.S. government officials were frightened by the fall of the Berlin wall (since they needed an enemy to justify the defense budget). That’s not quite the way I remember it.

LA replies:

It’s amazing how when you look at the full panoply of libertarian positions (though not always from the same libertarians), you see virtually every leftist position that conservatives, who treat libertarians as part of the conservative movement, claim to oppose.

You see support for the removal of all laws against dangerous and addictive drugs such as cocaine, heroine, and marijuana.

You see support for total life style and sexual libertarianism. You see support for homosexual “rights” and homosexual “marriage.”

You see support for the privatization of marriage, so that marriage becomes no different from any casual, private relationship, based on nothing but the feelings of two individuals.

You see support for the most radical anti-discrimination policies. Libertarians, especially of the Randian type, are more vociferously “anti-racist” than liberals.

Now those libertarian positions are already well-known.

But then there is another strongly marked libertarian position normally associated with the left: the anti-American bigotry of the paleolibertarians, particularly Llewelyn Rockwell and Ronald Paul. (Why should I call him “Ron” Paul? I don’t even call public officials whom I like, such as Janice Brewer and Christopher Christie, by their nickname; why should I call a public official whom I oppose by his nickname?)

So the libertarians, considered members of good standing of the conservative movement, stand for destructive moral liberationism, coercive anti-discrimination, and vicious anti-Americanism.

Now someone tell me once again why libertarians are part of the conservative movement. Oh, yes, they’re against higher taxes.

We’ll always have Paris.

Sage McLaughlin writes:

You make an important point when you say that “neoconservative universalism leads logically and immediately to leftist multiculturalism.” This is true, though many people would think it is counterintuitive—at one time I would have thought it absurd. What I’ve come to see, though, and what your explication of the idea suggests, is that this is not because leftist mulitculturalism follows from neoconservative premises. The two are, in fact, mutually exclusive in a purely theoretical way, so most people just assume that neoconservative policy can never produce “leftist” outcomes. But of course it can.

The problem with right-wing universalism isn’t necessarily that it is internally inconsistent, or that it implies leftist multiculturalism. The problem is, more fundamentally, its relationship to truth. Its premises about human nature are seriously mistaken—it is, in short, a falsehood to maintain that people are basically alike in the way that neoconservatism says they are. Because people do not actually think and behave the way that neoconservatives say they should; because “liberal democracy” is not a pheromone, exposure to which will cause people to abandon their cultural and biological essences like snake skin; because the neoconservative vision of a global democratic “last man” is every bit as wicked and anti-human as the Nietzschean or Marxist variety; because, as a species of liberalism, neoconservatism’s premises are simply untrue; therefore mass immigration from non-Western countries cannot result in a world of Muslims, Hindus, and godless Chinese who meekly transform into liberal Westerners with a somewhat different skin tone. The truth is, a man from Pakistan or Sudan can never look at George Washington and feel a deep sense of kinship to him and to the European Christendom of which he was a product. The truth is, that sense of kinship is strictly necessary to maintain the monoculture of ordered liberty that neoconservatives sincerely treasure.

We must always remain fixed on the underlying assertions of liberalism, whether right or left. Its logical coherence is a separate issue, and can of course be dealt with when necessary, but finding contradictions in an abstract theory is a game that will never really open people’s eyes—after years and years of sophist schooling, they realize that it is possible to make an apparently logical argument for or against anything. To get to the heart of the matter we have to strike at the basic assumption that people of different histories and kinship groups are interchangeable. There is some awakening to the truth of the matter, but it has not gone far enough. So we have to repeat the point again and again—liberal universalism, of the right or left varieties, is simply not true, and will for THAT reason never produce the outcomes its proponents claim. And since all forms of liberalism are at war with reality, liberals will always demand more radical and totalizing measures to make their vision come about. That is the nature of our fight.

LA replies:

You write:

The truth is, a man from Pakistan or Sudan can never look at George Washington and feel a deep sense of kinship to him and to the European Christendom of which he was a product. The truth is, that sense of kinship is strictly necessary to maintain the monoculture of ordered liberty that neoconservatives sincerely treasure.

On the question of immigration, this is the single most important insight that a person can have. This understanding has been at the center of what I’ve been trying to get people to see since 1990.

I only disagree with you when you say that neoconservatives sincerely treasure ordered liberty. Maybe once they did. That time is long past. The neoconservatives who rooted for Donald Rumsfeld who—when mobs sacked Iraqi government offices and museums and wrecked the infrastructure of every single institution of higher learning in Iraq—lightly declared, “Freedom is untidy,” are not people who treasure ordered liberty.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 29, 2011 07:26 AM | Send

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