Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spitzer, The Left and Its Dictators

Why is it that many prominent members of the Left admire dictators? I'll tell you a secret. Just between you and me, don't tell anyone. I believe that "Left" admire them for one simple reason: in their position, they can "get things done".

The Democrat Governor of New York, Eliot Spitzer, prosecuted a great many people, and publically railed against those who came to their support.
He was a man who could get things done.

"I will not tolerate this behavior" -- Danny Hakim, "Spitzer’s Staff Misused Police, Report Finds", New York Times, July 23, 2007

"ethics and accountability must and will remain rigorous in my administration" -- Cara Matthews, "Cuomo: Spitzer aides used state police to try to damage Bruno", The Ithaca Journal, July 23, 2007

"I have always stated that I want ethics and integrity to be the hallmarks of my administration" -- Melissa Mansfield, "Spitzer punishes aides after AG report", Newsday, 2007-07-23

He'll resign next Monday because of his grossly unethical behavior.

You see, dictators rule by raw power. If you don't do what they say, you'll be in trouble. With that kind of power, you can "get things done" -- in a hurry.

And the many prominent members of the Left are stymied by the lack of power in getting done what they think is right. And there are undoubtedly a few on the Right who feel the same way. The reason there are many more of them on the Left is because members of the Left want to do so much more "for Humanity" -- they see so much more that is "wrong". They pine for power to remove the obstacles they feel are impeding their perceived solutions; they pine for such power to speed up those solutions rather than have to patiently wait while they cajole and convince the masses of the rightness of their cause du jour. Hence, they have an admiration for those who actually have such raw power, and who can "get things done".

But raw power engenders a kind of Manichean anaesthesis of the soul -- tending to sharpen the contrast and remove the grey areas. It turns one's view of the world into fully good and wholly bad with a dollop of zealous righteousness added for good measure. It makes you judge whatever you feel the need to do as on the wholly good side. And this is the genesis of Lord Acton's comment.

Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Oddly, they on the Left might actually be able to tell you about Lord Acton's dictum. They may even remember that he is it's author. But they know it wouldn't apply to *them*. After all, they only have the benevolent well-being of their fellow man in mind.

Speaking of dictators that many prominent members of the Left (especially Ramsey Clark, I believe) probably admire, here's someone else who had the well-being of their fellow man in mind, Liberian elected president (and dictator) Charles Taylor, as told by one of Taylor's chief and long-time henchmen.

"He [Taylor] made us understand that you have to play with human blood so enemy forces would be afraid of you."

"We put heads on sticks for people to be afraid. When the person is executed, the stomach is split and you use the intestine as a rope."

"It's not difficult to kill a baby. Sometimes you just knock them on the head, sometimes you throw them in a pit, sometimes you throw them in the river and they are dead."

"We executed everybody -- babies, women, old men. There were so many executions. I can't remember them all."

[Click on the title above, or date stamp below, to see the full post.]

An Acton reminder of the ultimate effects of raw power -- as if there aren't enough reminders strewn along the gutters of History's path.

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