(L) Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), and Kim Jong-Un (b. 1984)
by Mary W Maxwell, currently a candidate for US Senate
Thomas Hobbes came up with a theory – to which I fully subscribe – that war, or at least the preparation for war, is unending. What if your country is peace-oriented, genuinely having no desire for war, no desire to exploit others? Oh, that’s nice, but it won’t keep you safe because somebody out thar gonna git yew. The “Hobbesian dilemma” means your desire to be peaceful will always be frustrated.
Last week at a Senate Candidate Forum in Huntsville, Alabama (home of the Werner von Braun Center) the audience asked terrific questions. One had to do with Electro-magnetic technology. The man asked us “What will you do to stop the hacking into our infrastructure?”
My senate-hopeful colleagues (i.e., rivals) all promised strong military or scientific defense. I said “Forget it; it’s too far gone. Not every problem has a solution.” Since the meeting was in a church, I added that God created the problem by creating energy!
As with the Hobbesian dilemma, there are interactions between groups that cannot be set right by even the best effort of one group.
Droning Kim Jong-Un
Let me state the classic Hobbesian dilemma again: You can’t disarm your nation, as, internationally there will always be a cheater and you MUST protect against the cheater!
Now let’s talk about “the North Korean threat.” Of course there is no such threat. And there is no need to deal with “Strong Guy” (or “Nutter”) Kim Jong-Un. He is on a par with Man Haron Monis – a set-up guy, a patsy. Had the US wanted to do away with Kim, it could have droned him any time he stepped out onto his balcony.
Note: If the police had wanted to shoot Monis during the 2014 Lindt Café hostage-taking episode, they could have done so, easy-peasy, from the hallway. No need to measure the thickness of the glass on behalf of the snipers in the Westpac Bank building. The cops’ Forward Command Post was a maximum of thirty feet from the back door of the café.
Officers were very close by, in the Jordan Library – A DISTANCE NEVER MENTIONED DURING THE INQUEST.
And by the way, if Kim Jong-Un were to read my 2017 book, Inquest: Siege in Sydney, he’d be getting mighty nervous, recognizing that all patsies end the same way.
And dishonest coroners end in jail. (I can dream, can’t I?)
Orwell’s View of War
Now I’ll attempt to fulfil the title of this article, about the Hobbesian dilemma coming full circle. As indicated above, I think Kim is a patsy. He is not a fearsome leader, cooking up a war between North Koreans and other nations. Rather, he is being used as a quick symbol of trouble, so that Americans will accept the idea of a necessary war.
Necessary? Allow me to explain.
In the 1949 novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell (1903-1950) created a character named Emanuel Goldstein who put forth a very new theory of “armed conflict.” The war raging in the year 1984 (as understood by Winston Smith, protagonist of Orwell’s book) was between Oceania (Europe combined with America), and EITHER Eurasia or East Asia.
Why do I say “either”? Because, as Winston saw, his country, Airstrip One (the former Britain) regularly sent its soldiers off to war, without bothering to articulate any justification. It was blindly accepted by the people that “we gotta fight.”
In fact, you may recall that he was annoyed and disappointed that his girlfriend Julia did not show any interest in why Airstrip One was at war. Not that her boyfriend, Winston, would be called up for service – only the proletarians “The Proles” – were in the military.
You’ll no doubt have trouble concentrating on Emmanuel Goldstein’s theory of war. Our brains are not suited to it. Our brains are extremely suited to imagine a war, or a rivalry, directly between A and B. Indeed the positive emotion that comes with A’s gearing up for a fight against B must mean that such an emotion evolved way back when.
How could our brains, or our emotions, possibly handle this new configuration – a war organized by “X” involving all the A’s B’, C’s on the map. Which of us has the least clue as to what World War III will look like?
The Goldstein Theory of Wasteful War
There is a “book within a book” in 1984. It is “written by” the fictional character Emmanuel Goldstein. He holds that the purpose of war is to waste resources. Yes. Because if there were no war, people would see how easy life could be with the abundant resources that are available. They would then grow resentful of the rich – and we can’t have that.
I find it hard to imagine that the Bozos would actually set up a war for that purpose, but I do know of other things they do that are just as yucky. They create diseases to kill, or merely disable, or merely make nervous, whole populations. They pollute the air and oceans – not just for profit but deliberately.
This is a quote from “Goldstein”:
The essential act of war is destruction, not necessarily of human lives, but of the products of human labour. War is a way of shattering to pieces … materials which might otherwise be used to make the masses too comfortable, and hence, in the long run, too intelligent….
It is deliberate policy to keep even the favoured groups somewhere near the brink of hardship, because a general state of scarcity increases the importance of small privileges and thus magnifies the distinction between one group and another.
Wow. Would the Bozos do this very odd stuff as Goldstein describes it? I know of a good reason to say Yes, they would engage in it. Namely, the fact that “Goldstein” was able to conjure it up. Remember, anything Goldstein wrote actually came from the pen of George Orwell. (Orwell wrote Animal Farm, too. It’s famous for the line “Some animals are more equal than others.”)
Unexplained Bolts of Genius: Orwell and HG Wells
How is it that George Orwell, a 46-year-old man with no known training in Machiavellian politics, would come up with such a cynical piece of work? I claim that the whole book, 1984, was leaked to Orwell by The Powers That Be. I don’t mean they composed the novel for him. They provided amazing predictions of what lay ahead in human society, and which have come true – e.g., round-the-clock surveillance.
So whatever is in the book 1984 is what was being carefully planned. And if you think 1948 is an early date for such planning, consider what HG Wells put into his 1928 novel, The Open Conspiracy. Wells said that the goal was to eliminate such seemingly impossible-to-eliminate things as the family, the monarchies, and religion.
I ask: Why would an ordinary citizen, HG Wells, conjure up such radical things – and then not go around, Mary-Maxwell-style – preaching about it to the multitudes? Why would Wells not undertake to show people ways to steer a different course?
Surely, SURELY, Wells and Orwell were scribes. By the way, Orwell died soon after completing the book 1984 – of a lung ailment, at age 46. Maybe he had protested? At least he did not end up in Room 101, where he said we are all going to end up if we are dissidents.
As an aside, please consider this: both of Orwell’s magna opera, Animal Farm and 1984, became required reading in American high schools. Why?
The Modern Hobbesian Dilemma Is Quite a Dilemma
Hobbes warned about the impossibility of creating long-term peace. He says you have to be prepared to defend your tribe. Unfortunately, your build-up of an army may entice a rival to become more aggressive. It also may tempt you to use prematurely your wonderful defensive weapons in an offensive capacity. (See National Defense Authorization Acts….ahem, ahem.)
Still, our new arrangement in some way overrides Hobbes’ scenario. As I said, the cynical truth is that Group X endeavors to get Nations A, B, C (all the way down the alphabet) to make war for X’s sake.
Weird, huh? You didn’t have that in Julius Caesar’s day – he went around battering every tribe down so he could rule the world. There was no need for him to play off the tribes against one another. Probably it never even occurred to him to PROVIDE various players with excellent weapons so they could scare the daylights out of each other.
But our Top Dogs (the cabal, the World Government, the Bozos – whatever you call them) are deep into weirdness. I argue that, for them, the Number One Problemo is “How to stay in power” – because if they fall from power they are done for, bigtime.
So they may have sat there, one day, before the 1948 composing of 1984 and thought up the Emmanuel Goldstein Theory of War, as their only hope of personal survival. (Oh you poor wittle darlins, so scared.)
The Cell-Phone Cover Pix
I constantly see on my cell phone this week, in July 2017, pictorialized news headlines about North Korea’s missile capability. (Maybe it’s like Man Haron Monis’s capability to phone 3 friends to have the Opera House exploded – remember that one?).
Today I saw on my cell phone that the US has accomplished “a missile intercept test” near the Korean peninsula. Certainly sounds like the US forces will be participating in an Asian war. But at whose behest?
And would it be asking too much for the US President to discuss the matter openly with the people, and not let my cell phone company orient my thoughts for me? And what kind of dignity is there for American soldiers if they’re treated like the Proles, sent out to fight for no discernible reason? “Just answer to the trumpet call, Boys, no need for you to understand who has laid this crazy trap for you.”
Hobbes’ Problem Solved?
Madam Editor of GushoeNews.com might bawl me out for submitting a “confusing” article. But the reader is supposed to be confused — that’s the whole point. The Goldstein-type war (war to use up resources) is bad enough. The current multi-wars arranged by X for X’s personal “security” is mind-boggling.
Yet there is a touch of good news. The current situation is a better one than the classic one envisioned by Thomas Hobbes in the 1600s. There, aggressive states could devise a “foreign policy” against one another. The current situation is some combo of the Goldstein idea of Use Up Resources, and the typical human behavior known as Do What I Need for Myself To Stay in Power.
The correction of the classic Hobbesian dilemma will never occur; it’s not a doable. But the correction of the Bozos arranging wars to use up resources, and/or wars to help the Bozos stay in power is very doable.
The correction would be to whoop their sorry arses.
–Mary Maxwell almost never ends a book without pinning blame. See her free books at www.maxwellforsenate.com.
Photo credit: Logical Place and Kim Jong-Un - BBC.com