Medieval v Modern
Medieval Political Absolutism v Modern Democratic and Checked Distribution of Power
Medieval Dissimulation v Modern Integrity
President Putin’s feudal Moscow has set the new low standard for the obliteration of human conscience, empathy, and reason. His state has defied the open democracies of the west by perverting their politics into a polarized circus with the help of “Allahu Akbar Terrorism”, and to the extent that the open democracies have turned reflexively toward Right / Far Right Nationalism, that may be the measure of Putin’s success with the installing of a new feudalism in the once free and secure states of the post-WWII political order.
President Trump’s Drift Toward Feudalism
Posted by YNN February 16, 2017.
To be asked of President Trump: Still campaigning? Still defensive? Still bending the questions to yourself? Still missing policy?
Glaringly clear in the above video clip (now making rounds the in the “fake” — major, established, institutional, high-integrity — media, e.g., CNN’s take as alluded to in the above video) is President Trump’s refusal to offer assurance to Americans regarding the Jewish Community and with it the general security of America’s minority communities (that’s how equality works) or to offer insight into related domestic security policy.
To be asked of you: how far back toward feudalism — the rule of the strong, not the rule of law; the law of the absolute, not the law of the compassionate and reasoning; the way of the criminal in the death of conscience and consideration for others, not the way of the righteous in the embrace of human consciousness and conscience and related promotion of care for the dignity, freedom, and security of others — do you now wish to travel on your journey into the future?
What part of the civilizational past — absolutism, barbarism, caprice in the possession and application of political power — should we wish today to have looming before us?
Those who believe they have been fighting Islam have been fighting the medieval signatures of the religion, e.g., the tirades against the infidel; the differentiation between believers and unbelievers; the subjugating of Christians and Jews to Muslim political will; and a reprehensible raft of barbaric punishments (like “contralateral amputation” for thievery) and repugnant misogynist and rigged legal precepts.
Islam needs moderation, modern interpretation, reform, and updating at the level of the mosque.
Should you happen to be Muslim bent on the destruction of Greco-Roman Judeo-Christian post-Enlightenment western civilization and its now representative democracies, for how long should you wish to wallow in the dismal blood-soaked pools of the feudal past?
And is feudalism the best you can do?
In BackChannels opinion, it is no accident that Moscow, Hezbollah, and Hamas (and Moscow and the New Nationalists — for a start: Erdogan, Le Pen, Orban, perhaps Trump — appear to have a relationship plus stakes in shared authoritarian narcissistic psychology.
To only the simple minded should it appear that the Ummah of Islam presents a unique destructive challenge to the modern world when in fact it is the entire feudal assembly of autocratic regimes — never forget what applies to dictatorships worldwide: “Different Talks — Same Walk!” — that serve to undermine the naturally progressive (and progressing) modern democracies of the world.
Various of the world’s Muslim-majority states have suffered mightily themselves from Islamist attacks. Pakistan especially has had to weather mass murdering attacks against its Frontier Corp and other military targets, including an elementary school, also against numerous mosques, countless businesses, and tribal organizations. These days, one may find at least one article 🙂 like this one in Pakistan’s premier defense publication:
The Times of Israel. “From Anti-Zionist to Zionist: An Interview with Noor Dahri.” Redistributed in Pakistan Defense, April 28, 2016.
Call it a start or look for more article like it (for the sake of focus on this post, BackChannels will demur on the topic of Muslim states in or entering a transition toward a more globally cooperative peace and prosperity).
Medieval Signal: Anti-Semitism
On the left sidebar of this blog, BackChannels maintains a statement about anti-Semitism:
Caution: The possession of anti-Semitic / anti-Zionist thought may be the measure of the owner’s own enslavement to criminal and medieval absolute power.
There are many tropes today but here favored among them and in relation to the tension between the feudal world and the modern one, this one applies well: “What starts with the Jews never ends with the Jews”.
There’s a fine example of a variant here in a 2014 article appearing in the Irish Examiner: “It starts with the Jews. It never ends with the Jews” (November 28, 2014).
Here’s another example, which BackChannels may have to retract but will dare the reprinting because the message is so applicable to understanding the barbarism of the feudal mode and the role played by “authoritarian” leaders — dictators in fact or resemblance, essentially — in bringing that excess of egotism and idolatry to full and cruel realization.
In the feudal mode, one may like and defend the Jews — see BackChannels on Putin’s “anti- anti-Semitism” — or excoriate the Jews (revisit Moscow’s relationships with Hamas, Hezbollah, Tehran), but the main thing is that the Jews be separated from others and deemed useful (usually because they’re perceived as being good with money for the realm of interest, or because they’re easy — and considered lucrative — targets for plunder and murder).
Feudalism and Rebellion
What soul not directly profiting from feudal (and unconscionable) behavior in any given institution would fail to rebel — or, worse, fail in spirit — against the iron fist of a modern fascism?
For economic disaster, dial into this era Putin’s update on feudalism, for Putin has driven down Russia’s cash reserves while increasing his state’s reliance on rule-of-law western financial institutions for keeping safe what reserves remain. His ambition appears to be that of building a fully militarized state with internal defense economy to match.
For that, installing conflicts around the world for the benefit of one’s own Big Defense Economy might turn out a great business!
Russia is growing its military budget by roughly $10 billion next year, even as tumbling oil prices and sanctions from Europe and the United States will see Moscow slash its welfare spending by $6 billion in 2017, the Gazeta.ru news website reported Tuesday, citing a government source.
The Kremlin announced Monday it would decrease its welfare spending from $210 billion to $203 billion dollars. Alexandra Suslina, an economic analyst, said Russia has made defense and social spending its priorities, while all other spending would receive “whatever is leftover,” the Moscow Times reported.
Source Link: http://www.ibtimes.com/russia-military-spending-moscow-spends-big-weapons-poverty-rate-grows-2426425 – 10/4/2016.
Defense aside, feudalism dampens the spirit for creating, purchasing, living. The state, or the corrupt and powerful of the state, may take all of whatever one has created.
As much related to mafia, then state mafia, and related skimming or “take” has damped capital investment in Russia while for many years also adding to the encouragement of capital flight. The too centralized a state and its power plus the “kleptocrat” at the controls ruins the exuberance produced by freedom and the concomitant dreaming and effort that produces cool and desirable new everything.
For souls who may come to believe — or worse, know — the “fix is in”, how great may be their effort to swing into the marketplaces confident in their own powers and the promise of rewards?
For the nominally Communist Soviet Union, methods had to be produced to keep people watched and inside the state (talk about an “open air prison”!) and in today’s uncertain ultra-nationalist imperial Russian Federation, something similar may be noted in the immense poverty spreading through a region with ample natural resources for producing basic industries and an affluent middle class throughout.
All that has gone wrong?
Idolatry of another “Great Leader” bent on looking good — more: heroic! — in state-controlled / state-inhibited press.
What follows: excerpts or remarks related to the “charms” of feudal authoritarian control (of “the masses”).
Best advice: reconsider and revisit America’s founding documents.
At present, the authoritarianism business is booming. According to the Human Rights Foundation’s research, the citizens of 94 countries suffer under non-democratic regimes, meaning that 3.97 billion people are currently controlled by tyrants, absolute monarchs, military juntas or competitive authoritarians. That’s 53 percent of the world’s population. Statistically, then, authoritarianism is one of the largest — if not the largest — challenges facing humanity.
Kasparov, Garry and Thor Halvorssen. “Why the rise of authoritarianism is a global catastrophe.” The Washington Post, February 13, 2017.
POPULIST parties of both right and left, many pro-Russian, did well in last May’s European elections, taking between them a quarter of the seats. This has raised fears of a coherent pro-Russian block forming in Strasbourg.
In Greece, the now-ruling radical-left Syriza party leans towards Russia. On February 11th Nikos Kotzias, the new foreign minister, went to Moscow—his first visit to a foreign capital outside the European Union. Syriza is cool on sanctions against Russia, and opposed to expanding them. Another left-wing, broadly pro-Russian upstart is Podemos in Spain, which leads in the polls. Its leader has accused the West of double standards in dealing with Russia.
The Economist. “In the Kremlin’s Pocket: Who Backs Putin, and Why.” February 12, 2015.
… As the Kremlin has spearheaded anti-gay and anti-abortion legislation, and as Putin has made moves to formalize the supremacy of the Russian Orthodox Church within Russia, so, too, have myriad members of far-right social conservative movements in the United States praised Putinist policy. Thankfully, such linkages have seen further coverage than the relations between the “alt-right” and secessionists — see, for instance, research from the University of South Florida’s Christopher Stroop — but it remains worth noting a few highlights of this relationship. For instance, according to Bryan Fischer, one of the most well-known faces of American Christian fundamentalism, Putin is the “lion of Christianity.” Paleoconservative politician Pat Buchanan, meanwhile, has alluded that God may be on Putin’s side. And Franklin Graham, the son of famed evangelist Billy Graham and perhaps America’s foremost remaining televangelist, recently visited Russia to praise Putin for remaining “steadfastly against the rising homosexual agenda” in Russia.
This tripartite blend, of white nationalists, of secessionists, of social conservatives, have all formed some of the primary bulwarks of the Trump campaign over the past few months, and there is little reason to believe they’ll refrain from supporting Trumpian policies moving forward. Moreover, all three have seen their leading proponents — those within the “alt-right,” most especially — construct rhetorical, organizational, and financial links with the Kremlin and Kremlin-financed groups over the past two years.
Michel, Casey. “Beyond Trump and Putin: The American Alt-Right’s Love of the Kremlin’s Policies.” The Diplomat, October 13, 2016.
Posted by Katehon Think Tank on March 4, 2016.
Salhani, Justin. “‘Putin’s Rasputin’ has lauded Donald Trump as a ‘sensation’.” Think Progress, December 15, 2016:
Widely referred to as Putin’s Rasputin, Dugin has also elaborated a Russian version of Manifest Destiny known as Eurasianism. Eurasianism is a totalitarian political ideology that “rejects the view that Russia is on the periphery of Europe, and on the contrary interprets the country’s geographic location as grounds for a kind of messianic ‘third way’,” according to a report released by the Wilson Center.
Aleksandr Dugin is a radical, Trump supporting, self-proclaimed philosopher from Russia. Traditionalism and cultural purity are two of his most valued philosophical tenets. And while his influence may be overstated in Russia, his ideology has infiltrated white nationalist circles in the United States and parts of Europe.
Salhani, Justin. “The White Nationalist Movement’s Favorite Philosopher.” Think Progress, December 19, 2016.
At a security conference in Munich on Friday, Mr. Poroshenko warned the West against “appeasement” of Russia, and some American experts say offering Russia any alternative to a two-year-old international agreement on Ukraine would be a mistake. The Trump administration has sent mixed signals about the conflict in Ukraine.
But given Mr. Trump’s praise for Mr. Putin, John Herbst, a former American ambassador to Ukraine, said he feared the new president might be too eager to mend relations with Russia at Ukraine’s expense — potentially with a plan like Mr. Artemenko’s.
Twohey, Megan and Scott Shane. “A Back-Channel Plan for Ukraine and Russia, Courtesy of Trump Associates.” The New York Times, February 19, 2017.
On Tuesday the Anne Frank Center released a statement denouncing Trump’s response to the anti-Semitic string of attacks as inadequate.
“The President’s sudden acknowledgment of Anti-Semitism is a Band-Aid on the cancer of Anti-Semitism that has infected his own administration,” the statement said. “His statement today is a pathetic asterisk of condescension after weeks in which he and his staff have committed grotesque acts and omissions reflecting Anti-Semitism, yet day after day have refused to apologize and correct the record. Make no mistake: The Anti-Semitism coming out of this Administration is the worst we have seen from any Administration. The White House repeatedly refused to mention Jews in its Holocaust remembrance, and had the audacity to take offense when the world pointed out the ramifications of Holocaust denial. And it was only yesterday, President’s Day, that Jewish Community Centers across the nation received bomb threats, and the President said absolutely nothing. When President Trump responds to Anti-Semitism proactively and in real time, and without pleas and pressure, that’s when we’ll be able to say this president has turned a corner. This is not that moment.”
Rozsa, Matthew. “What universe are these people living in?” Anne Frank Center blasts Sean Spicer for complaints over anti-Semitism whitewash.” Salon, February 22, 2017.