Friday, September 27, 2002

What would we do without the U.N.?

Dwarf Throwing? Dwarf Throwing? The U.N. finds the practice of a dwarf willfully being thrown around a bar unacceptable but Saddam Hussein getting Nukes is fine? That's it.

U.N.! Into the microwave! Now!
Crack for Everybody!

Even in my wonderful home state of Wisconsin (really... its not actually that wonderful) kids have started braiding crack cocaine into their hair. I know all the kids are doing it, but if they jumped off a cliff would you do that too?
This Shit Pisses Me Off!!

I am enraged!! Women are not better at keeping their tempers. It makes me so angry when people say otherwise. Whoever did this study is about to get their ass whupped! I mean Damn it! I am the best at keeping my temper and I'll kill anyone who thinks differently!

Thursday, September 26, 2002

I got Gooooooooooooogled!

I got googled and the search was "toronto nudity lawyer shoes parade gay." Not exactly what I was hoping to be known for but thank you for stopping by!
Here we go again!

To start, let me thank everyone involved in this conversation so far. I'm going to begin this post by restating what I believe my friend meant as far as the Hugh Effect:

When a 'superior' ideological structure is introduced into a static system, no matter how small the dispersal, it will eventually lead to the common overthrow and destruction of the static system.

Or perhaps more specifically:

When a free market, liberal influence is introduced into an oppresive society, these influences will spread quickly and lead to revolution.

While I believe this can occur, it is clear that it would have to be under ideal circumstances. I would credit the Hugh Effect with dissolving the Soviet Bloc but not because it was an unassailable force. It was because the Soviets experienced a fundamental change in their viewpoint. They started to value human life above an idea. They lost the will to murder people over beliefs. Once this happened, the superior(more free and rewarding) ideology crushed the old one.

So that's what it comes down to as Tatterdemalian so perfectly summarizes. Freedom can only spread when the regime respects your right to live. Thanks for steering my thought in this direction.

Now on to responding to LS:

I think Hong Kong's going to be slick with blood in a decade or so when China tries to implement a "reform" that is meant to plunder the island... the Hongkongers will probably let their freedoms leak away one by one slowly if they're still able to play with trinkets and baubles.

I totally agree. China has proven time and again to value ideology over basically everything in existence. They have hated Hong Kong the whole time as they hate Taiwan now. They are bent on breaking Hong Kong to pieces due to either jealousy or ideological hatred. It is definitely an interesting situation to watch and I will take special care to compare the 'reforms' enacted in China and compare them to potential losses of freedom in our own country. Perhaps this nearly unavoidable future tragedy can serve as a reminder of the price of freedom.

North Korea is to China what the Palestinians are to the Arab League. They are a disposable supply of cannon-fodder to throw at the unwanted democratic neighbor should the need ever arise. Any suffering they endure is meant to set the bleeding-heart liberal elements of your enemy against the hardliners who know your evil for what it is. Diplomacy is just an attempt to get the fanatics to your ideology in place to destroy your enemy from within.

Apologies to the Japanese are just as empty and bankrupt as Arafat calls to reign in terrorism and implement reforms. The toxic ideology's been sunk in way too deep for there to be any true remorse on the part of the North Koreans or Chinese.

I agree and disagree. I believe that the relationship between China and N. Korea is far more complicated than that. East Asian cultures are very proud and nationalistic. I would imagine that N. Korea is far more independant of China than any Soviet Bloc country was to the U.S.S.R. during the cold war. There are some other situation there that cause me to believe that there may be actual progress. Culturally North Korea is far more connected to its Southern neighbor than to China. In fact, Korean folk-lore is none-to-kind to China or Japan. Also, N. Korea is running out of food, money, and commodities which is putting pressure on the leadership. Here's what I think is really happening. I think that the N. Korean leadership is pushing towards a more open, connected economy to help bolster their incomes. In time this will backfire on them and cause the Koreas to be reunited. Give it 20 years.

And as for how the Hugh Effect applies to the Middle East, well, it doesn't. Outside influences are obliterated and destroyed by the fanatics on the end of the leash of the so-called moderates. A Moderate Muslim is someone who is unwilling to die for his totalitarian goals, but he's willing to conveniently write a check to a Radical Muslim to do it for him.

After thinking about it, agree in most cases. The majority of nations in the middle east place no value on human life in any form and whether there are a hundred or a million hughs in their country, it won't matter. They'll all end up 'decorating street lamps.' But there are a few nations that I have hope for. Iran's student movement seems to be gathering strength and the old guard seems none-to-excited to actually do anything about it. I have a good feeling in general about Iran's future and it only gains strength when I imagine the effect of American military presence in Iraq.

Which brings me to my final point about this. Freedom, whether economic, ideological or religious, will not flourish worldwide until regimes that value controlling minds over human life are removed from existance. I know who the good guys are. Anyone with a soul does. They are the ones that are trying to let people control their own lives and, more importantly, let them have a life in the first place. Iraq is a good place to start this fight but the world will never be a safe place until all the Hughs have the right to control their own destinies. Our job won't be done until all the Hughs are allowed to say, "I want this," and actually get it.

For the Hughs!

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

Hugh Effect Part Deux!

Laurence Simon at Amish Tech Support has a well thought out response to my Hugh Effect post. Time permitting I will have a detailed response to that. He brings many new thoughts to the concept and I look forward to exploring them.
Gun of the Week!

Today's gun of the week is the Heckler & Koch MP-5 Submachine Gun! I really, really love this gun. Light, accurate, and awfully purty. If special forces are going to let some air into Saddam's brain, something like this will likely be the tool of choice. Maybe a Ka-Bar would be more fun but... time may be of the essence.
As long as we still get to shoot them!

This story says that cloned animals are safe to eat. Think what that could do for hunting! You would be able to hunt whatever they could clone! Sounds exciting to me!
France Less Wussy by the Day

I'd like to extend my thanks and congratulations to the French military for rescuing the American citizens in the Ivory Coast. What's more impressive is that they did it without surrendering. Not once. Nothing in my experience could have prepared me for that. I don't even think they brought their white flags. That has to be a first.
More on the Hugh Effect

I brought the previous post to the attention of Laurence Simon at Amish Tech Support and he had this to say:

How does your Hugh Theory apply to China and Hong Kong?

This was my response :

I would currently blame the "Hugh Effect" for the growing efforts of China to curb the independence of Hong Kong. China's average citizens are seeing the life that people in Hong Kong are living in a more intimate way than ever before. Families are allowed to travel back and forth and communicate. I believe that China sees the Hugh Effect looming on the horizon and are taking steps to prevent it in an attempt to maintain power. The concept of two systems in one nation is not going to last as China's officials realize how tenuously they are holding on and how easily this could get out of control. Another interesting area to apply the theory is the Middle East. The variables involved make it nearly incomprehensible.

I would be greatly appreciative of any ideas of applying this effect to the Middle East or any other situation. I could use all the help I can get in making up my mind on the theory!

Two Koreas is Better than One!

This article about warming diplomatic relations with Communist North Korea have spawned many interesting possibilities in the far east that I would like to address. It is again more evidence that a strong, aggressive America inspires more positive political change than a passive, appeasing America. Immediately following the growing threat against Iraq, Korea has moved rapidly towards healing the 50 year old wounds caused by the Korean War.

Korea has begun diplomatic talks with Japan in an attempt to work through previous nightmares including the kidnapping of several Japanese officials during the Cold War. They have begun to open talks with South Korea and are reopening rail and road that have been closed for half a century. I believe this is a sign that Korean Communism is on its way out and while it may take 20 years, the Korean peninsula is headed for economic if not governmental unity. This is a wonderful thing for all involved. But there may be a problem.

China once again becomes a concern. Its list of allies grows increasingly short and the unrest within its border increasingly powerful. The old guard of Chinese Communism are aging and they are finding little in the way of adequate, fervent replacements. The ideology that burned books and destroyed places of learning and worship have no true support from their students. I believe this may cause an ideological and perhaps strategic backlash in the region that may hinder if not reverse the growth in freedom we have seen in the last twenty years.

A friend of mine has a theory I lovingly call the Hugh Theory. I haven't made up my mind completely on it but I do agree with it in theory but not always in reality. The idea is named for a Star Trek:TNG episode which some of you may be familiar with but for those who aren't, I'll explain. In this episode, a Borg(a race of cybernetic automotons with a central brain who are all communicating constantly) is captured. The plan of the crew is to implant a computer virus to destroy the Borg hive mind. During Hugh's stay on the ship, he develops a sense of self and begins to value his personal choice(something he is without in the Borg). The crew eventually decides that it is better to send that message back into the collective than to use him as a weapon. Sure enough, in a later episode the Borg have collapsed and it is all because of this free will spreading like a virus.

My friend postulates that if Taiwan were captured it would be good for everyone. He argues that Hong Kong and Taiwan's free market influence and commitment to personal freedom will spread throughout the Chinese population and eventually overthrow the current mind set in a matter of decades. I believe this has not occured yet in the case of Hong Kong and I certainly don't believe Taiwan will be the added weight needed. The problem with the theory isn't that thoughts don't spread and build support. Its that in a harsh Police State(tm), the stronger an idea the more extreme the response. If Taiwan were to be captured, I would guarantee a massacre of epic proportions in an attempt to punish and subdue the 'rebels'. Because this "Hugh Theory" thought process, I am concerned that recent moves in Hong Kong bode vey poorly for freedom in East Asia.

One of my key concerns in the Iraq debate is what China will do in reaction. I believe that China has been far more neutral in this situation than at any time in recent history. My concern is that China may attempt to take advantage of our double engagement in the middle east to strike out and take back "what's theirs." Don't get me wrong, an attack on Iraq is necessary more than anything because it is right. I always believe we should do the correct thing no matter what the cost. I also believe that if China were to pursue Taiwan, it would be an enormous mistake. But China has been proven to be very inadequate at estimating the strength, devotion, and mindset of America. Militarily, we would have ample forces in theater to prevent the capture of Taiwan. In fact, China probably doesn't have the amphibeous or airborne resources necessary to actually capture Taiwan as outlandish as it seems. I believe it would turn into a London Blitz very quickly.

The concern is that China would start a shooting war at all. I have argued since I was a teenager that China is the greatest future threat in the world and that, sooner or later, it will come down to us or them. Their leadership and the bulk of their culture leads me to believe that the 'middle kingdom' will go after what is theirs(the world) sooner or later.

What does that have to do with Korea? Plenty. The Chinese valued the Korean buffer to an extent that they started a shooting war with UN Peacekeeping Forces in the Korean War! And it certainly wasn't a 'limited' war. Ask anyone in the 8th Army at the time. The culmination of my thought is that, if China begins to see all of its neighbors moving more and more in line with western interests and thought, how long will it be before they begin to try and stop it.
Real Life Rears Its Ugly Head

I had to take a break because of the usual work/sleep/eat cycle but I'm back again and hopefully my 3 or 4 diehard readers will stick with it.