Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Ill Logic...

Danegerus a decidely Right wing blog routes the reader to this naive article by Dinesh D'Souza.

It's one of those Right-wing-happy-face-pollyanna-America-is-great-so-stop-complaining-and-enjoy-the-sunshine articles.

While I'll agree that there are great things about this country I cannot take the kind of drivel-headed nonsense that spills out of D'Souza. At one point in the article he praises the virtues of America by writing:

...what distinguishes America is that it provides an impressively high standard of living for the "common man." We now live in a country where construction workers regularly pay $4 for a nonfat latte, where maids drive nice cars and where plumbers take their families on vacation to Europe.

Now, I'm not sure what he means by the 'common man' but last I checked the cash that plummers rake in is far more than average. And living here in Los Angeles I see hundreds of maids many of whom don’t even have cars. Most take the bus.

What does D’Souza say about workers at WallMart, waiters and waitresses all across the heartland or people working for under $24K a year – of which there are millions - or retired families who have to go back to work because the likes of Enron bankrupted them? Nada.

Sure, some workers buy an occassional latte but that's because in many areas there is a Starbucks every few blocks. That's hardly a reason to signify the virtues of a booming economy. The question is can these same workers afford a house or easily fork out money for college or pay for health care? Maybe they should be drinking water instead, huh?

Yes, the common man is heathier and richer than they are in...say...Africa or India but does that justify a reason to celebrate when it's easy to see how much more others - who do far less - make in this country? We all know that the 'common man' in America today is not getting much in the form of Bush's tax cuts and the disparatity between rich and poor is more glaringly apparent than it was a mere three decades ago.

We can do better.

But D’Souza saves the best for last. This floored me:

About America's foreign policy he writes:

America has the kindest, gentlest foreign policy of any great power in world history. Critics of the United States are likely to react to this truth with sputtering outrage. They will point to long-standing American support for a Latin or Middle Eastern despot, or the unjust internment of the Japanese during World War II, or America's reluctance to impose sanctions on South Africa's apartheid regime. (Emphasis mine)

Yes, Mr D'Souza and you forgot Korea and Vietnam.

In the very next sentence he writes:

However one feels about these particular cases, let us concede to the critics the point that America is not always in the right.

Wait, so if America 'is not always in the right' then why fallaciously even use such words as 'kindest' and 'gentlest' about our less than stellar foreign policies?

From this logic I'm supposed to believe that since we are (arguably) better than the Romans and the Ottomans we should stop complaining about all the death and destruction wrought by our policies and military actions?

Read the rest of the article and if you want to write a letter to Mr. Dsouza (thedsouzas@aol.com) telling him what you think.