Tuesday, May 03, 2011
  Who's Enlightened?

News item:
Knowing there would be disbelievers, the U.S. says it used convincing means to confirm Osama bin Laden’s identity during and after the firefight that killed him. But the mystique that surrounded the terrorist chieftain in life is persisting in death. “We are going to do everything we can to make sure that nobody has any basis to try to deny that we got Osama bin Laden,” John Brennan, President Barack Obama’s counterterrorism adviser, said Monday. He said the U.S. will “share what we can because we want to make sure that not only the American people but the world understand exactly what happened.”

...

In the immediate aftermath, people in Abbottabad expressed widespread disbelief that bin Laden had died – or ever lived – among them.

“I’m not ready to buy bin Laden was here,” said Haris Rasheed, 22, who works in a fast food restaurant. “How come no one knew he was here and why did they bury him so quickly? This is all fake – a drama, and a crude one.”

Kamal Khan, 25, who is unemployed, said the official story “looks fishy to me.”

...

Sagarin said most people will probably be convinced bin Laden is dead because they cannot imagine the government maintaining such an extraordinary lie to the contrary in this day and age.

Yet, he said, “as with the birther conspiracy, there’s going to be a set of people who are never going to be convinced. People filter the information they receive through their current attitudes, their current perspectives.”


Isn't it odd?

The whole point of the Enlightenment in religion and science was to trust your own logic and senses, and distrust the flat statements of the priesthood.

And who's Enlightened?

The Muslim world and the Soviet world are Enlightened. They understand from long experience that government lies 100% of the time. They want to see evidence that they can trust.

America's experience with 100% transparently false government is shorter, basically beginning in 1964 with the Warren Report. So the population of Enlightenment thinkers here is large but far from universal.

The American media, and the blind followers of the Parties, are pre-Enlightenment thinkers. Party members implicitly trust whatever My Party says and distrust what The Other Party says. Since the two Goldman Sachs "parties" create "fair and balanced debate" on only a few trivial and numerical points, the Party people end up trusting government on nearly all important questions, no matter how obviously absurd.

To the priesthood of media and government, Enlightenment thinkers are "conspiracists" or "paranoids" or "deniers" or "skeptics" or "truthers" or "birthers", who can be safely tossed overboard without a proper religious burial ceremony.

Our priests never use the word "heretic" because that would be a true description of what's happening, and our rulers NEVER NEVER NEVER speak the truth about anything.

= = = = =

A bit later: It's even more odd that the Gaian Occupation Government respects the Enlightenment thinkers in the Muslim world but utterly condemns Enlightenment thinkers in this unfortunate land. When Pakistanis correctly disbelieve the lies of our government, they deserve a "decent respect for the opinions of mankind". When Americans correctly disbelieve the lies of our government, we deserve to be jailed.

Oh. Got it. Not odd at all. Pakistan has nukes. Americans don't.

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Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.

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