How To Up Your IQ By 10 Points
August 14, 2006
For a 5 point increase in your IQ, see Dr Sanity’s Ahmadinejad And The Paranoid Style. She comments on the 60 Minutes interview with Iran’s president, and likens him to a fictionalized true life character.
There is a scene in the movie A Beautiful Mind, where the mathematical genius John Nash has wallpapered his office walls with literally thousands of pages from newspapers, magazines, and other sources purportedly to demonstrate linkages. The room is total chaos; a giant complex spider-web of insane conspiracy, that accurately reflects the disorder and confusion in his mind. But he has kept most of this locked away from the view of others. To others, he appears complex, persuasive, sure of himself and often brilliant. It is not until his collegues enter his office and find the disordered nest of all his insane connections do they understand the extent of his illness.
Read Dr Sanity’s post. It really is destined to be a classic blog post- an example of a critical eye looking beneath the surface.
There is another must read post, today. Shrinkwrapped, in A Questionable Assumption, takes a more sweeping look at the events of our time. He questions conventional wisdom and what is often left unsaid:
The common assumption, overtly made by the left and tacitly accepted by the right, is that the Islamists are inherently weaker than the West and therefore, do not pose an existential threat to the West. In other words, neither side of the political divide believes the West can lose this war. This belief animates much of what passes for strategic thinking. There is a clear difference in how both sides assess the current threats. The Left is unable to take the military aspect of the war with any seriousness. They do not see Iran as being a particular threat to anyone and worry much more that if the Western powers fight back aggressively, even with the limited weaponry we have thus far brought to bear on the Islamists, we will only succeed in alienating more and more young Muslims and creating more enemies. I think this is wrong and that there is nothing we can do to prevent the growth of Islamism, but the position is at least defensible.
On the right, the assumption leads to such disconnects as the Coalition forces fighting in Iraq and Israel fighting in Lebanon using techniques that can only be seen as “warfare-lite”. Worse, despite all evidence and provocations, there seem to be minimal efforts to address the source of the problem, Iran (and to a much lesser extent, Syria)…
I believe that, in practice, the assumption that we can meaningfully effect the course of Islamic totalitarianism short of full scale war is unwarranted, and whether our policy is controlled by the left or the right, any actions short of full scale war will only delay the final confrontation. I also do not see any way to square the circle.
The Islamists are at war with us.
That’s called upfront and in your face thinking- and Shrinkwrapped’s post is a must read.
SC&A will make one observation that we believe are relevant to both fine posts. Iran and Syria are pulling strings in the region because there are strings to be pulled.
Hizbollah is an effective proxy for Iran and Syria because there is little, if any consequence for their behaving in any other way. If the cost to Hizbollah and Lebanon becomes so high, they will no longer be proxies of evil and as such, much of the influence wielded by Iran and Syria will be muted.
If Lebanon- and for that matter, the Palestinians were made to pay a high enough price, the influence of Iran and Syria would be rejected.
As Shrinkwrapped notes, war isn’t pretty, or romantic or noble. The Germans found that out when their unconditional support of Adolph Hitler resulted in the relentless bombing of German cities and towns. It was then that Germans understood that maybe National Socialism wasn’t such a good idea after all.
If the Lebanese see their future with the racists and bigots that are Hizbollah, well, so be it. They are free to be as ‘enlightened’ as any other Arab totalitarian regime. If they insist on exporting their bigoted ideology, well, Israel will only be too happy to experience more of Hizbollah’s ‘Great Victory.’
Yesiree, Hizbollah has won a great victory. With the support and to the joy of God (who no doubt intended for the bombing of Lebanese towns and the deaths of so many Lebanese as part of the Hizbollah victory), Southern Lebanon resembles a moonscape, southern Beirut has been turned rubble and the parts of the Lebanese infrastructure has been obliterated. The 30,000 Israeli troops that will remain in Lebanon are a symbol of Hizbollah’s great victory.
There are such documented instances of ‘mob mentality,’ mass hystria and mass delusion.
The great tragedy is that these kinds of dysfunctions are clearly in evidence in parts of Lebanon and throughout the Arab world- and it is these kinds of dysfunctions that will keep the Arab world in the stone age, unable to share the values of civilized society.