13 May 2022

Not Really Violent Delights

There's nothing delightful about them. Just violent, and heading toward the ends.

  • (More than) once upon a time, the American military opened fire on peaceful protesters (one of the many, many reasons that I harass every West Point graduate about that damned statue when they bitch about pulling down statues of acknowledged traitors). At least one officer appears to have learned something. Better late than never, eh?

    Which leads to the extraordinarily difficult quandary of how to deal with conflicts between military and civilian control. Civilian control is a least-bad choice — one that, as the incidents cited in the preceding paragraph make all too clear, still has multiple failure points far beyond the realm of impossibility. As any even cursory history of any part of the worlds makes clear, though, Clemenceau had it exactly backward: It's peacetime that is too important to be left to the generals.

  • Like this one, the motivation for which is disturbingly parallel to that of a less-violent problem not long ago. Certainly not long enough ago. Why yes, I am saying he was a bigot, or at minimum acted so consistently with how a bigot would act that it's both impossible and meaningless to try to distinguish the two.
  • Or, I suppose, we could just let oligarchs greenwash everything — whether Russian or American (intentionally choosing a non-American source for that one!). And there are so many, many other examples.

    Maybe we should just get out of the habit of naming things after donors and sponsors who didn't themselves do the work. No more renaming law schools after real-estate speculators. No more art galleries named after ne'er-do-well inheritors of oil fortunes. Nope, gotta put in some actual creativity or labor… darn, there's the problem.