Mar 25, 2023
Mar 25, 2023
Let us assume you and I are walking together in a park on a bright sunny morning and I say, like I have said before to you on numerous occasions, "Isn't it a cool moonlit night"? You have three choices. You can either disagree, agree or keep quiet.
If you disagree, you affirm that you are aware that it is daytime and not night, that you are unwilling to disregard my lie, ignorance or idiocy and willing to assert your independent idea of truth and reality.
If you agree, you are ignorant, idiotic, indifferent or just too polite to argue or assert or a sycophant under obligation to me or desirous of favors I can bestow upon you.
If you keep quiet, you may be docile, apathetic, too tired to repeatedly argue with an idiot like me or once again desirous of favors I can bestow.
|There is another reason oft quoted by more erudite evolutionary scientists about why they refrained from taking Stephen Jay Gould, the former Harvard Paleontologist and popularizer of evolution, to task for his outrageous and wrong statements. He was on the their side and they did not wish to give ammunition to the religious creationists (who like Pakistani terrorist groups frequently change their names and now masquerade under the new eponym of Intelligent Design Advocates) by internecine warfare.|
Indifference or silent acquiescence will only prevail, if my statement is trivial and not affecting you personally or your hopes and desires are more immensely important. You are much less likely to ignore my false statement that I seduced your wife or wish to send your progeny to death, unless you are beyond honor or redemption.
Thus, it is amusing to speculate about the American population's tolerance of and concurrence with the blatant lies of the current administration that we invaded Iraq to destroy WMDs and to spread democracy, we are winning in Iraq, and we went there so that they wouldn't come here. Bush made a statement that 9-11 happened before the Iraq invasion which is true and therefore the foolish and illegal invasion of Iraq did not increase terrorism, which is patently false. 9-11 happened due to our prior foreign policies and while it was dastardly, terrible and deserving of retaliation, Iraq had nothing to do with it. These repeated untrue allegations and false connections clearly demonstrate that our leaders are liars, idiots or both, or they have a hidden agenda and think that we are indifferent, ignorant and idiots and deserve no plausible explanation or truth and can be depended on to be gullible, subservient or manipulated emotionally by false patriotism.
On a different note the impoverished Russian space program is selling tourist seats at a price of twenty million dollars each. So far three avatars of Croesus have taken the trip, one South African and two Americans. Why the conspicuous absence of European magnates? Are they incurious or unwilling to take the risk, more secure in their ego or have a different or more sensible use for their millions? A verse of the Bhartruhari Shatak aptly puts it that humans and particularly males, desire knowledge, sex, wealth, fame and salvation (read immortality in the post-Darwinian era) in that order. Thus to paraphrase Thorstein Veblen's Theory Of The Leisure Class, rich people indulge in conspicuous consumption to generate awe, envy and respect. Andrew Carnegie who used unethical violence to kill and intimidate the striking steel workers, then expended his fortune building libraries and other good things. His colleague in crime remained an unrepentant rogue and his parting words to the repentant magnate were, "See you in hell". Others like a former Sultan of Morocco left behind 700 children in an attempt to satisfy his lust and received the collateral benefit of immortality. Other conquerors and emperors like Chengiz Khan derived similar benefits. Ford, Rockefeller and more recently Bill Gates have given away large sums of money to charity while acquiring it with improper methods. Ashoka abandoned war and proclaimed," Henceforth I will conquer by Virtue" in his edicts after the battle of Kalinga.
While it is difficult to generalize and unfair to chastize, we should all be wary of the cat which decides to go for Haj after killing a million mice. Compassionate conservatives, sinners with newly acquired obsessions with religion and other fanatic religious zealots, Lenin, Stalin, Pol Pot and Mao like communists, aging Trotskyists metamorphosed into Neo-cons, Nehruvian socialists with a taste for personal luxury and delusions of grandeur, all often have one thing in common. "Madhu tishthhate jihvagre hridaye tu halahalam ' Honey at the tip of the tongue but poison in their heart. Of course all generalizations are wrong including this one and the reader may conclude that I am with sin and should not cast stones or perhaps this attempt to write other people's epitaph is a subtle expression of my impending mortality and prescribe to me, "Physician heal thyself".
More by : Gaurang Bhatt, MD