Response to 'Dead Enough: The Reality of the "Lesser Evil"'
Zahir Ebrahim's Response to Chris Floyd's 'Dead Enough: The Reality of the "Lesser Evil"'
Ebrahim | Project Humanbeingsfirst.org
November 15, 2012
Quote Chris Floyd
Is this child dead enough for you? [Ed. Note: graphic image.]
This little boy was named Naeemullah. He was in his house -- maybe playing, maybe sleeping, maybe having a meal -- when an American drone missile was fired into the residential area where he lived and blew up the house next door. ...
Before the election, we heard a lot of talk about this notion of the "lesser evil." From prominent dissidents and opponents of empire like Daniel Ellsberg and Noam Chomsky and Robert Parry to innumerable progressive blogs to personal conversations, one heard this basic argument:
"Yes, the drone wars, the gutting of civil liberties, the White House death squads and all the rest are bad; but Romney would be worse. Therefore, with great reluctance, holding our noses and shaking our heads sadly, we must choose the lesser evil of Obama and vote accordingly."
Thanks to Chris Floyd for remembering this little "unworthy victim" Naeemullah, as Noam Chomsky would characterize this innocent unmourned victim of the good guys, who, predictably as always, is dismissed merely as "collateral damage", the "lesser evil" in the war against a greater evil.
By Chomsky's definition, the "worthy victim" is always worthy of being mourned, as it is made victim by the bad guys or their allies. The "unworthy victim" is unworthy of being mourned or even worrying about, as it is made victim by the good guys or their allies.
So the equally innocent child Malala Yousafzai, the "worthy victim", a victim of the evil-doers, is to be honored and even celebrated, perhaps even anointed as the "peace-maker" and awarded the Nobel Peace prize. It makes the bad guys look really bad and advances the cause of empire's counter-insurgency operations against them.
And because frequently occurring "worthy victims" continually refuel the necessary "doctrinal motivation, intellectual commitment, and patriotic gratification" to sustain "imperial mobilization" since "democracy is inimical to imperial mobilization" as Zbigniew Brzezinski puts it, it is not beyond empire to create the "worthy victims" itself using the bad guys as stooges:
Quote US Army Field Manual:
“Top Secret: There may be times when host country governments show passivity or indecision in the face of Communist subversion ... US Army Intelligence must have the means of launching special operations which will convince host country governments and public opinion of the reality of the insurgent danger ... US Army Intelligence should seek to penetrate the insurgency by means of agents of special assignments, with the task of forming special action groups among the most radical elements of the insurgency.” -- Source: see The Mighty Wurlitzer
The brutal creation and public-relations harvesting of "worthy victims" enables putting to bed all the "unworthy victims" as merely the "lesser evil" in empire's counter-insurgency operations. This is examined in the report: Insurgency vs. Counter-Insurgency.
The brilliant nomenclature of “worthy” vs. “unworthy” I hope helps shed some forensic light for the confused as to why empire's favorite Malala Yousafzai even has November 11th, 2012, declared by the UN Special Envoy for Global Education and former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, as the ‘Malala Day’, while Dr. Aafia Siddiqui has ignominiously been put in jail for life. Since no one really likes to remember the “unworthy victims”, I have included their images here.
My old prof. from MIT has surely contributed a great deal of meaningful vocabulary and penetrating concepts for explaining the Machiavellian statecraft of perception management throughout his extraordinary life of dissent. Including the following:
Quote Noam Chomsky:
This “debate” is a typical illustration of a primary principle of sophisticated propaganda. In crude and brutal societies, the Party Line is publicly proclaimed and must be obeyed — or else. What you actually believe is your own business and of far less concern. In societies where the state has lost the capacity to control by force, the Party Line is simply presupposed; then, vigorous debate is encouraged within the limits imposed by unstated doctrinal orthodoxy. The cruder of the two systems leads, naturally enough, to disbelief; the sophisticated variant gives an impression of openness and freedom, and so far more effectively serves to instill the Party Line. It becomes beyond question, beyond thought itself, like the air we breathe.
Democratic societies use a different method: they don’t articulate the party line. That’s a mistake. What they do is presuppose it, then encourage vigorous debate within the framework of the party line. This serves two purposes. For one thing it gives the impression of a free and open society because, after all, we have lively debate. It also instills a propaganda line that becomes something you presuppose, like the air you breathe.
The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum – even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.
It is most essential to understand the unstated backdrop for this "lesser evil" concept emanating from the dissent-chiefs who are evidently employing the same methods of perception management that they have explained the empire employing for "manufacturing consent". So, logically speaking, are they manufacturing dissent – or straightforwardly manufacturing consent?
Virtually everyone who critiques empire's burlesque, ahem, its excesses, has almost always made the pre-supposition that its "war on terror" is real because 9/11 was an invasion by terrorists from abroad. "Like the air we breathe", once that pre-supposition becomes the silent and unnoticed backdrop, the lovely progressives and their dissent-chiefs can easily go about discussing the best way to fight that "war", and that's where the discourse of "lesser evil" concept cleverly plays in. It only serves to legitimize the "war on terror" axiom which itself remains unchallenged.
Thus one can go freely about critiquing empire's methods of prosecuting that war, and not the axiom upon which it is based. Therefore, automatically, the "war" against the "terrorist" is the natural outcome once that core-axiom remains unchallenged. And we end up with what is the "lesser evil" debate - giving the illusion of "lively debate within that spectrum – even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate."
Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, and Progressives et. al., have together echoed the same core-axiom as the Pentagon, the White House, the mainstream media, et. al., that 9/11 was the work of the Muslim terrorist Osama Bin Laden espousing the vile “militant Islam”. Amazing that they each have so much in common with their supposed "antagonists"! I had thought that dissent is supposed to challenge, inter alia, the Machiavellian narratives of the state? I guess it is only some narratives and not others that are to be challenged and dissented against. I imagine I could easily classify these as “worthy narratives” and “unworthy narratives”, the former to remain untouched and those going after them to be labeled “conspiracy theorist”, the latter to be legitimately critiqued and awarded prizes for as belonging to the “voices of conscience” and to “peace makers”. The “unworthy narrative” and its concomitant label is examined in some depth in the report: Anatomy of Conspiracy Theory.
It is a perception management game of which virtually all the so called "progressives" in the Western hemisphere, and laudingly led by their vaunted dissent-chiefs whom they often air prominently, are an essential part. It constitutes the Hegelian Dialectic of Dissent. This is also examined in much depth in the report: The Mighty Wurlitzer.
Unless one can understand the various methods of perception management, including manufacturing dissent to capture those moral souls escaping from the manufacturing consent factory, one cannot understand anything of modernity. Including this "lesser evil" mantra. Some of these methods of controlled dissent the Mighty Noam Chomsky has himself brilliantly articulated, as evidenced from his perceptive quotes above. And he is celebrated as "arguably the most important intellectual alive" by the mouthpiece of empire itself, the New York Times.
All this manufactured "celebrity" status has garnered these "moral consciences" of the West a great following of useful idiots – people formerly in the mainstream who got fed-up with the lies of the state and were captured by these "collection agents" lest they become troublesome and effective in their opposition. Hitler characterized this lot rather well in his Mein Kampf as type-2. The report on Manufacturing Dissent examines the import of this exercise of craftily putting dissent on the treadmill running in place to nowhere for sustaining "imperial mobilization" unfettered.
As for Chris Floyd's main observation of the Progressives: “... but Romney would be worse. Therefore, with great reluctance, holding our noses and shaking our heads sadly, we must choose the lesser evil of Obama and vote accordingly.”, any genuine dissent-chief with even an iota of analytical reasoning skills and the ability to astutely navigate the empire's many rabbit holes would have argued what this scribe suggested in October 2008: “Not-Voting is a ‘YES’ vote to Reject a Corrupt System which thrives on the facade of Elections and Democracy!”
It would be laughable, were it not actually a sophisticated propaganda matter, that among these so called “Progressives” led by their dissent-chiefs, the same spirit of presupposition of the party line is at play in their virtually every discourse with its concomitant “vigorous debate within the framework of the party line” as ably depicted by their most notable leader in his quoted passages at the top. “It also instills a propaganda line that becomes something you presuppose, like the air you breathe.” That “propaganda line” in this instance is examined in the report: Election 2012 vs. Election 2008: What has Changed?
Catch a man a fish and feed him for a day, teach him how to fish and feed him for life -- or something like that....