Wednesday, January 16, 2013

We Are Legend

Are you familiar with the alternative ending to the movie "I Am Legend".  If not, watch it here.

OK, that's makes a lot more sense than the original ending in the film.  Apparently it also more closely aligns with the book.  Throughout the movie you are carried along thinking Neville is acting noble.  You don't consider the story from the perspective of the beings that he is capturing, performing experiments that lead to many deaths.  These creatures are intelligent.  They created an elaborate trap that snared Neville.  You never think about the horror they feel when they wake up in the morning and discover that Neville has captured another family member, or perhaps driven a stake into a loved one's heart.

In the final scene where the creatures descend on his home, it's not because they are hungry and want to eat him.  They want to save the woman he has captured.  Neville is legend because he is their bogeyman.  He is the one that comes and snatches them when they sleep, then kills them.  This is the whole point of the book.

Coming to this fresh realization of what the whole story was about reminds me of the realization I came to about US interventionism.  I thought of Muslim terrorists as zombie like crazed savages that can't be reasoned with.  Thinking about things from their perspective as they watch children starve in Iraq, or as dictators were imposed on them that murdered them freely, just didn't occur to me.  The US is Robert Neville, bravely doing experiments on others to fix them in the way we think they should be, and the pain endured by the people that need the fixing is not really a consideration.

Will our country be the stuff of legend in a few centuries?  Was there really a country that actively attempted to undermine any means of curbing environmental catastrophe all so certain insanely rich people could be even more rich?  Did they really impose dictators throughout the world so corporations could send enormous profits to stockholders while preventing the people that did the work from getting more than 31 cents an hour?  Did their justice department really drive people to suicide for daring to provide information freely to impoverished people free of charge and at the same time wine and dine banksters at the White House that funnel money to terrorists and enrich themselves by crashing the overall economy?  Did they refuse to punish tortuers and punish exclusively the people that tried to inform the public of the torture?  Later generations will find it hard to believe.

What's also hard to believe is that at the time so many people cheered this on and genuinely thought it was the right thing to do.  They praised the sweatshop owners, the economists that provided the intellectual foundation for banksters and third world dictators, and said that the real villains were the people that tried to make the planet hospitable for future generations, or the people that work to prevent the wars.  We will be legends.  It's so depraved future generations may conclude that really it's all a myth.


Examinator said...

I'm supposed too be the 'bad Cop'! ;-)

Notwithstanding I have to agree with the trust of your musings.
I think the west (white right[sic]) are generally and the US in particular are prone to cultural arrogance in that they ASSUME and assert/ENFORCE mores and myopic interests on others. i.e. WE KNOW what's better for you and WE WILL enforce it and to hell with the consequences.

The problem is as I've tried to show your 'right' coterie is that their REASONING is flawed in that it is based on two assumptions
the first is their process is back to front. i.e. they START with a conclusion because it FEELS good then select the 'evidence' to justify that conclusion.
The second is that if it feels good or assists us it must be an UNIVERSALLY good therefore WE HAVE THE INALIENABLE RIGHT TO ENFORCE

Rather than consider ALL the facts, the context of each and the probable, if not historically demonstrable consequences.

I and I suspect you don't believe in the above approach.
I think if one analysis most of my comments in context. I don't preach i.e. I KNOW THE RIGHT ANSWER as I've indicated before I simply don't believe I have the answers. My comments are more inclined to "what about Xxxx? " as my avatar implies I examine.
The right tend to use tactics rather than objective argument.
Among these tactics it 'reduction to the ridiculous then ridiculing the result' which at best is simple an avoidance technique.
a subset of that technique is to argue by non existent or extremely unlikely extremes (either or scenario).
All there techniques are on display in all 4 of the biggy arguments
Firearm control, Abortion, economics and AGW (sic).
I've seen the latest ad from the NRA which is doing the rounds and they use all of the above techniques including in one instance non sequitor and straw man argument. What they lack is substantiating facts.
In reality the 'Muslim issue' is as you rightly say is simply blow/push back again past and current US foreign/corporate policies as you rightly say.

Suppose the American corporate policy was instead of exploitation of those whose choice is starvation of wage slavery (a wage that is substance level) world wide then everyone would benefit. But reality is that Vulture capitalism exists BECAUSE of the above 'wage slavery'. This opposed to HP rose colored glasses induced version of " market economy" (sic) which it clearly isn't.
The market economy requires several factors that simply doesn't exist "a level playing field" is the most important.
Even without US 9liberal ) government 'alleged' corruption via laws etc it still wouldn't and can't exist within
a: a limited Liability
b: where overall society imperatives are ignored in the name of letter of the law as opposed to the spirit of the tax evasion and extreme differences in Equity (As opposed to equality).
I note that other than Jonathan neither is prepared to defend against obvious pointed out argument short coming.

Examinator said...
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