Duly Noted: Mickey Mouse Must Die


George Handlery about the week that was. Pies in faces. Preventive nuclear war plans. Principle for oil? Palin and Obama. Economics and blame. Good guy: his bomb was for elsewhere. Not lies are the problem: believing them is.
1. Pie-in-the-face. It is reported that M. Sobel, convicted in the Rosenberg case for spying for the Soviets, admits now what he has been denying. He really was a Soviet spy. Along with the convicted and executed Rosenbergs. Even this will hardly convince those who have made the innocence of the Rosenbergs into their dogma. The correctness of such positions – as are causes such as “Cuba” and “Viet Nam” which after his release Sobel “fought for” – are articles of faith. The main effect of the regret-free admission is not going to be the clarification of a case whose rational proof has been solid all along. What Sobel’s role and his causes do is to put the unrepentant Hanoi Janes and those chanting “ho, ho, ho Ho Chi Minh” once again, with a pie in their face, into the company they deserve.
2. More pie-in-the-face. This time it is worn by the transatlantic Peace Activists. These are the people that have foolishly done their insufficient best to deprive us of the means of self-defense. Even if the USSR’s succession state still guards the secret, stunning information emerges from some ex Warsaw Pact states. Until the late ’80s, WP’s planning assumed a nuclear and not a conventional war in Europe. The war was to begin with its unprovoked preventive tactical nuclear blow. NATO presumed the conflict to be avoided would grow out of a crisis and be initially conventional due to the Soviets’ massive superiority in this area. The WP’s first strike would have aimed at the nuclear “disarmament” of Western Europe by destroying its nuclear arsenal with the unanticipable preventive surprise attack. Contrary to expectations, conventional operations – always practiced in maneuvers, as offensives – were to be only a mopping up operation. The presumed quick march to the Channel had its makeability in the nuclear crushing of organized resistance. In the waning decade of the Soviet system its military, cognizant of losing the high-tech armament race, felt that this trend justifies and necessitates the unleashing of preventive nuclear war.
The first inference is that NATO’s planning was strategically wrong. It assumed a Soviet conflict management that was not even near to their real concept. Nowadays, in new contexts, we are still repeating this mistake. It comes about by projecting on the enemy one’s own thinking that is the product of a political culture which is not theirs. The second insight regards the West’s Left. As in the Rosenberg case, it is naïve to expect that the ageing activists will now do what they should. Those who went on the street for “détente” had it “all wrong” and, had they been successful, they would have improved the chances of Soviet strategy. Obviously, this would have made the implementation of the plans more likely. So they wind up through the revelations with a pie in their face. Accordingly, since they have “merely” misjudged the enemy and their own side, they should start to eat humble pie and cease self-celebrating their glorious “68”.
3. The containment of the operations of an offensive force is no aggression. If you find reason to reckon that it will provoke the other side then you have just admitted how dangerous that opponent is. One of the current dangers is that Germany and some others might use the isolation of Russia to strike a separate deal. The justification: Russia’s fears of the world are nurtured by isolation and that makes her more aggressive. The motive: its isolation might make Moscow offer a better deal. Call all this “rational principle traded for oil.”
4. There is little doubt that Moscow will, in the future, exploit Europe’s energy dependence and threaten with the reduction of deliveries. Yes, ultimately Russia needs the revenue. Cold rooms and ovens are, however, immediate.
5. Tactical advise. Begin with using “wise old” Biden’s experience to disqualify “young immature” Palin. Then shift gears. Use Obama’s “youthful innocence” to demolish that old-hand, “fogy” McCain as a candidate. Say that you are pressed for time to do this before he is mummified.
6. Palin and Obama share some characteristics. Like Obama, Palin conveys a good gut feeling to audiences. Even if the writer does not share all her views, her charisma matches the taste of several segments of the electorate. At the same time, her candidacy contains defined positions of substance. Therefore, in Palin’s case, going up in vapor if exposed to light is unlikely. Palin has been presented to the public months after Obama started his sales efforts. The conformist’s non-conformist’s attraction is emotional rather than substantive. Therefore, voters are less likely to tire of Palin than of Obama. As things are, the public might be showing signs of having its fill of Obama’s celebrity show.
7. Quite unrelated to the sub-prime crisis, the industrialized world is in the midst of a cyclical adjustment. This is neither unprecedented nor unexpected. A complicating factor accompanies the process of selective contraction and general expansion and that, being a renewal, is the foundation of rising welfare. The complicating factor is a public that, being illiterate in economic matters, is unable to asses the causes and the purpose of the movement in which it is caught. The bewilderment is not accidental. Schools do not deal adequately with the subject. Furthermore, the instructors – being themselves old-fashioned products of a dated system – are intellectually an emotionally unprepared to deal rationally with the process that channels economic activity.
8. There is an upshot of the above. Once accelerated change and its (creative) dislocation alert the public, it reacts with the confusion that is to be expected from the uninformed. Whether a country is governed some mutation of the Left – Britain, Spain and even Germany – or what passes as the “Right,” such as the USA, those in power are blamed for the dislocation. In case we would be in a generally upward-expansive phase – as under the Clintons – the same people would be credited for the good times. A lesson should be learned in order to be able to chide or extol those that deserve it and not only the ones on whose watch “it” happens. The thing to know is that that the power of government and of politics over the economy is limited. Government’s role is the most effective when – even if it means well – it ruins the environment in which the economy unfolds.
9. The publications I see like to point out that O. J. Simpson will be tried before an all-white jury. Would an all-black jury have been prominently mentioned? Alternatively, how about a jury of blacks in case of an accused white?
10. Momin Khawarja, now a Canadian citizen, was caught with a remote controlled trigger device to detonate explosives. His ingenious defense is that he did not mean to detonate in London but in Afghanistan. More dangerous than the bomb would have been is that such a defense can be mounted.
11. The Spiegel (Mirror) is the leading weekly of the German speaking countries – their population is around 100 million. Issue 35 was dedicated to McCain and the cover page had his picture titled “The Cold Warrior.” The next issue carries nine letters regarding the candidate. Seven are negative. Their totality suggests not only that Europe wants Obama. He is wanted for attributed traits attributed and because these are assumed to be the opposites of McCain’s. Ironically, Obama is trying to convince his electorate that these traits do not represent his values and his program. Now, to a blended summary of what McCain is said to be: 

McCain got himself shot down while bombing a city full of civilians.
True, McCain might have suffered in Nam; nevertheless, he has helped to wage a war of destruction against a defenseless civilian population. Therefore, one has to ask what else (but mistreatment) he could expect.
May our good fortune save the world of a President McCain who dreams of the US ruling the world!
The already existing instrument of domination is NATO. With the help of its new members the US succeeded to get Europe’s support for the encirclement of Russia.
It is also clear why Obama will not become President. What else could happen in a country ruled by gun-maniacs and conceit: moderates do not have the least chance there.
The Americans do not have enough blacks to finally white wash that country as a vast majority of the whites will never vote for a man of color!

The good news regarding these views would be if their sources would know that these are falsifications and simplifications made to prevail in a political contest. The real bad news is that the letter writers honestly believe what they say.
12. One more thing. Mickey Mouse must die. There must be a shortage of Christians, Jews, Hindus, Animists and Buddhists to kill. When will the Religion of Peace go after Donald D.?

hear hear # 6

@ Atlanticist

It looks like you phrased the moral dilemma too clearly and, in doing so, you caused a 'meltdown' in Kappert's brain, thereby exposing his kind of simplistic dogmatic (naive-left) fundamentalism.

Let's face it, as you did, there is no 'positive' side here in his nonresponse to your example.  There is only a moral coward exposed.     

hear, hear #5

@ kappert



What is your answer? Too late, somebody is already dead. In my world it would be the hostage taker and in your world the innocent child(ren), but on the 'positive' side, you did manage to retain your own sense of moral superiority. Congratulations!

hear, hear #4

@ kappert

Let me try to get your thoughts:


*  A 7 year old child is taken hostage in the school playground.


*  The hostage  taker threatens to cut the child's throat (having previously killed another child in the same fashion).


*  A police marksman can save the child by shooting the hostage taker in the head.


*  The child's parents are pacifists.


Q: Should the parents of the child (let the police marksman) kill the hostage taker, or (let the hostage taker) kill their child?

hear hear # 2

In my 'reality', children are taught:

-- First, to read.  That means they read what is in front of them, not want they want to read.  As a result, unlike kappert, they can distinguish for example between the details of an event (think Budapest) and the event itself.

-- Second, they are taught moral virtues, like honesty.  As a result, unlike Kappert, they do not constantly misrepresent or lie about what someone else actually said or wrote.  For example, I did NOT write that pacifism (necessarily) equates  with cowardice and parasitism.  That is a gross distortion of what I wrote.   I did explain in what specific sense that a certain kind of self-declared pacifists can be considered cowards and parasites. The ability to make intellectual discriminations or distinctions is what distinguishes an educated open mind from a closed one.

-- Third, they are encouraged to stand up for moral values.  That may at times necessitate some kind of fysical violence when the immoral thing to do would be to run away or to put one's head in the sand (i.e pretend not to 'see' some unpleasant reality).

hear hear #3

Let me try to get your thoughts:
1. event (Holocaust), detail of the event (Auschwitz gas chambers), event (Budapest street riots), detail of the event (police beats neonazis)
2. If it is a 'gross distortion' of your words, why do you use 'necessarily' in brackets and 'that a certain kind of self-declared pacifists can be considered cowards and parasites'. Why do you think to have an 'educated open mind', when
3. you see (at times) a necessity for physical violence in your children's education. Are the slaps in the face 'some unpleasant reality' for them or do they appreciate the 'moral lesson'?

Wanted: A Dictionary for Pacifists

@ marcfrans


Perhaps kappert could tell us in which dictionary we can find the antonym for the word MURDER (kill) shown as PACIFISM. All the dictionaries I've consulted show its antonyms to include words like GUARD, PRESERVE, PROTECT and SAVE.

Things that a pacifist would/could never do.


@ kappert


Is there a dictionary for pacifists out there that marcfrans and I haven't heard about? If so, please provide us with a link.

parasites # 2

What a beauty of an illustration of my earlier thesis that Kappert "wallows in (sentimentality, dishonesty and) unreason". 

Atlanticist did NOT call 99% of humanity "parasites".  He applied that term to only that small fraction of humanity that considers itself dogmatically "pacifist", i.e. people like Kappert who are defended by others but who, simultaneously and indiscriminately, condemn all violence (irrespective of the underlying intention or purpose of that violence).  Surely that kind of (almost exclusively postmodern Western) naive fools is only a very small fraction of humanity.  And, surely, one of their greatest illusions is the notion that most people are 'pacifists' like them.  In truth, most of these so-called 'pacifists' are not pacifists but cowards and parasites.  

hear, hear

Indeed, an interesting interpretation from our wants-to-be-psychologist offered, thinking that pacifists=cowards=parasites - I wonder what he'll call murderers. Must be the salt of the earth in his reality! As well as the 'underlying intention or purpose' of violent behaviour, I wonder how he 'educates' children, as a 'premodern' Westerner, that is!


"The executive forces of society should guarantee the application of the law".



However, irrespective of how riots normally (?) arise, you still haven't explained to me how, in a practical sense, pacifism is able to deal with the result and the aftermath.Moreover, you freely admit that non-violence is not  "typical human behaviour", which begs the question why, knowing this to be the reality, you continue to peddle a belief system that is alien to human nature.But if that isn't bad enough it gets worse:


"Some people make their profession with the executive forces, becoming police, soldiers, etc., others don't".


Clearly, you don't. What you DO is depend upon those  fellow citizens of yours to keep you safe on the streets and safe in your bed. They also defend your liberty from threats hatched by evil men (and women) both at home and abroad. You should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself but I know you are not.





When we 'depend upon those fellow citizens ... to keep you safe on the streets and safe in your bed' you call 'parasites' to 99% of humanity. Please, check your argumentation!

Stubborn, indeed

"For a militarist violence is an easy and quick reaction".


You will recall that it was the Budapest police who resorted to violence as a counter measure to crowd violence.So, are you levelling this accusation at the Budapest police force for adopting "stubborn militarist violence" tactics against the rioters? If so, please tell me how the Budapest police should have responded. (Note: this was my original question).


"Religious people should think of something else (other than meeting violence with violence)".


I think that applies just as equally (if not more so) to pagan pacifists, don't you? If you agree, please tell me what a pagan pacifist's alternative would be.


"I'm not a militarist, nor did I join the police forces".


You are not a Palestinian, but you are quick to offer opinions and solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian question. You are not a member of any police force, but you still managed to offer the following piece of advice.


Quote: "If one group of people were prepared to use violence they violate the law and police forces...should deal with them".For somebody who feels he can't pass judgement upon the behaviour of the police without first being a member of the police force himself, I'd say that is a judgemental comment of yours, wouldn't you agree?


"My answer was already given below".

Tell it to  me again, I must have missed it.






still, street riots

The executive forces of a society should guarantee the application of the law (legislative). Some people make their profession with the executive forces, becoming police, soldier, etc., others don't. Non-violence is not a typical human behaviour, as you know, that's why you strange with me. Street riots rise normally out of a poverty situation or out of social disruption (the Budapest case). Which makes it a political problem and not a problem of police violence.

@ kappert d

"If one group of people were prepared to use violence they violate the law and police forces (executive) should deal with them".


They DID "deal with them". They dealt with them  by the use of counter force i.e. violence, but YOU claim ALL violence is wrong, correct?  So, I'll ask you again, how should the police force have dealt effectively with that violent group of people other than by the use of counter violence?


For a stubborn militarist, violence is an easy and quick reaction. Religious people should think of something else. I'm not a militarist, nor did I join police forces. My answer was already given below.

~ kappert c

So, you have time to post a comment re: right-wing papers, but no time to defend pacifism. Doesn't that just say it all?

ps: Answer the question.

@ kappert 4b

"The question you should ask is how violence may arise".


I've thought about it and here are my conclusions.


If what you write is true, I'll tell you how violence arose in the Budapest example shall I?


One group of people were prepared to use violence in support of the exhibition and a different group of people were prepared to resort to violence in an effort to get the exhibition banned. Under those circumstances violence was the inevitable outcome. Your task is to explain to me how a pacifist would successfully address that violence by non violent means. Your answer, please. 


Thanks for giving me a 'task', but I'm not in the task forces. If 'one group of people were prepared to use violence' they violate the law and police forces (executive) should deal with them. 'Violence was the inevitable outcome', sad enough!

WT plans

WT plans were anything but uncoordinated. Those plans were for particular situations. Soviets were extremely cautious. But, who thinks DDR would have been anything but loyal, given its organization, STASI being just an element to prevent this disloyalty ? The "standard" plan was an attack on the W with all the armies from WT countries. And an attack of Poles against DDR was not the main reason why WT was about. So, OP-61 was marginal.

If WT plans succeeded, all of you would have ended your life rapidly, at best in concentration camps; because the plans succeeded...

DDR plans: did DDR had plans outside orders from Soviet commanders ? within WT ???

USSR had plans for strategic attacks on US. I assume the W was not a target for strategic nuclear attacks, because the territory had to be conquered. But fear of distruction ???

Criticism for what ? for countries who were meant to be part of an assault against US/W ?

@ kappert #4

You claim that "ANY form of violence is ABSOLUTELY UNnecessary". If  your theory  is true, it shouldn't be that difficult for you to explain to me how the police could have prevented those 'youngsters' from "clashing with the police and assaulting people", other than by the use of a strategy that clearly DID work. i.e. the use of tear gas and counter violence. Well? 

@ kappert #3

See @ kappert #2 (below).Or, is your silence the least embarrassing way for you to explain to me how pacifism actually 'works' in practice?

@ kappert #2

What you wrote: The youngsters clashed with police and assaulted people ... the police used tear gas and forced them out of the area.


What you know: The 'youngsters' clashed with the police and assaulted people ... the police used tear gas and forced them out of the area.


What I want to know: Does your brand of pacifism accept that there are some occasions when it is necessary to meet force with force and violence with violence?

street violence

As you already know, I do not appreciate violence at all and believe that any violent form is absolutely unnecessary. The question you should ask is how violence may arise, maybe marcfrans can help you by 'addressing the mind'. Still, in the Budapest case, I think it's closely linked to the 'Jud Süß' exhibition. People 'clashing' against people is only deplorable.


I did NOT suggest that riots should be considered "details".  I did state that Mr Handlery normally does not waste time and effort on  a lengthy description of any particular events or incidents that he raises in his texts.  Mr Handlery's articles are about IDEAS or conclusions, not about the descriptive "details" of any particular events or incidents.  He addresses primarily the mind of the reader.  By contrast, Kappert tends to wallow in sentimentality, dishonesty and unreason. 

I have absolutely no difficulty in denouncing street violence, whether it originates from rightist thugs or from leftist thugs.  And, I trust that Mr Handlery feels the same.  The fact that Kappert suggests that I would consider street violence a "detail" is proof of his dishonesty, as is his refusal to answer Atlanticist's questions (that are intended to expose the hypocrisy of Kappert's presumed 'pacifism').  And the fact that Kappert cannot make the distinction between (a) the details of an event and (b) the event itself, suggests either a lack of brains or it suggests dishonesty (i.e. a lack of moral character), or both.  

@ kappert

1 The police appear to have been prepared to meet low-level violence with low-level violence. As the BJ's resident pacifist do you condone what I think you should consider this shameful behaviour?


2 Had the violence escalated and the alleged right-wing thugs turned to the use of guns, resulting in the death and/or serious injury of the innocent, and the police had responded in kind, would you have supported such a violent response?


3 If your answer to either question is no, please, tell us how a pacifist police force should have handled the situation.




Sorry, I have no idea how the police philosophy/strategy/psychology is/was in this street fight, so I cannot comment on it. But not showing 'Jud Süß' in propaganda exhibitions would be a good start!


1) A regular reader (with brains and an open mind) will know that Mr Handlery usually brings up events, incidents, etc...as illustrations to make a broader intelligent point.  I would think it a reasonable expectation that Mr Handlery is not in favor of street riots of any kind.  Moreover, when pointing to particular events, incidents, etc...Handlery does not usually waste his time and effort on describing utterly unimportant DETAILS, but rather tends to express opinions about what the events, incidents, etc...mean.  In short he is capable of drawing (generally sensible) conclusions.

2) By contrast, what intelligent point could Kappert be making in describing totally unimportant details of a riot in Budapest?  He certainly does not draw any conclusions, let alone sensible ones.  What on earth is the relevance of detailed presumed descriptions of silly behavior?  A riot is a riot, isn't it?  Does it matter whether the violence comes from rightist thugs or leftist thugs?   'Thugs', in general, tend to be incapable of making rational distinctions between 'left and right'. 

3) It is of course perfectly possible in the current state of extreme moral relativism of much of western culture that the description of the riot by the Budapest Times was a dishonest one. For example, it is possible that a peaceful protest was turned into a violent confrontation by the police (acting on orders from the authorities) or by violent far-left counter-protesters.  So, one better keeps an open mind on that, at least for a while, until the facts can be better established. 

Conclusion:  The expectations regarding Mr Handlery are pretty good.  He will continue to express subtle and not-so-subtle opinions (often) regarding complex matters (using illustrations of empirical evidence in the process).  By contrast, the expectations regarding Kappert are bad, i.e. from him one can expect more head-in-the-sand-attitudes and trivial details.

Budapest riots

Even if Mr Handlery was 'reluctant' to comment on 'Jud Süß', the riots in Budapest against Gypsies and Jews didn't fall out of the sky. But, as marcfrans suggests, why bother with such 'utterly unimportant DETAILS', yet 'sensible conclusions' about the meaning of the Budapest riots would be appreciated. But after all, which newspaper gives a 'honest report' in this Murdoch-world? Marcfrans observed this fact from a distance of app. 2000mi, 'until the facts can be better established'. So, while marcfrans and Handlery deal with 'complex matters', always illustrating 'empirical evidence in the process', I rather look at the streets of Budapest and Cologne.

Budapest riots

Maybe some BJ readers recall Handlery's reluctance to comment the public exhibition of 'Jud Süß' in Budapest. Well, this is what happened this weekend.
The Budapest Times:
The police dispersed groups of violent far right protesters in central Budapest by 1930 hours local time on Saturday, after they had clashed with police, threw stones and petrol bombs and damaged whatever came within their reach along the city's elegant Andrassy Boulevard. An estimated 1,000 supporters of the far right youth organisation Sixty-four Counties and the radical right Jobbik Party gathered at the Heroes's Square in the afternoon to march along Andrassy Boulevard to the Inner City, where another, anti-violence demonstration was being staged by the Hungarian Democratic Charter movement, as well as a third one against racism and segregation by Roma Organisations. Laszlo Toroczkai, a leader of Sixty-four Counties, said that the protesters were "warriors to save Hungary" in a fight which was provoked by Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany and Roma leader Orban Kolompar. Gyorgy Budahazy, another well-known figure of the extreme right movement, referred to the two other demonstrations as a "plot between Jews and gypsies." The protesters, mostly young people, many wearing ski masks and carrying the red-and-white stripes associated with the radical right, went to Szabadsag Square close to Parliament Square where the Charter demonstration, attended by some 4,500 people including Gyurcsany, several ministers and many well-known personalities, was ending. The youngsters clashed with police and assaulted people leaving the anti-violence demo, but soon had to leave the square after the police used tear gas and forced them out of the area. About 500 of them decided to head back towards Heroes' Square on Andrassy Boulevard, while another 100 protesters sought temporary shelter in a nearby Calvinist church. The police used tear gas at several points of the boulevard to make the groups disperse and to prevent the radical youth from smashing windows, destroying the furniture of pavement cafés or damaging parking cars. Four injuries have been reported. Traffic along the Grand Boulevard has now re-started, but the police continue to patrol streets in central Budapest.
PS: I do not expect a Handlery comment on this.

den Kopf verlieren (losing one's head)

1) For me the crucial expression under point 1 is "...the regret-free admission...".  Mr Sobel, even now, shows no regret for committing treason against his own democratic polity on behalf of its mortal totalitarian enemy.  His counterparts (Russian critics) in the Soviet Union faced death in Stalin's goulag.   Mr Sobel remains what he has always been, a doctrinaire dogmatist that prevents him from seeing reality.

Kapitein Andre, also, has not been thinking straight for some time.  His slavish anti-Americanism prevents him from seeing the big picture.

No (debatable) 'imperfections' in public policies of a democratic polity, engaged in resisting the extension of communism into Cuba and Vietnam, can justify the manifest treasonous behavior of 'Hanoi Jane' and fellow 'useful idiots' for totalitarians. 

2)  No military plan escapes unscathed after the first shot is fired.  While there can be no doubt as to which side had the aggressive intent (and perhaps the need in order to preserve its undemocratic character), no one can know for certain which side would have resorted first to nuclear weapons.   But, Mr Handlery is surely right to point to the tendency of naive Westerners "of projecting on the enemy one's own thinking that is the product of a culture which is not theirs".  Indeed, Kapitein Andre's 'reasonings' are fundamentally no different from the attitudes displayed by 'Hanoi Jane'.  Behind an intelllectual veneer, they reflect the same moral-relativistic emptiness.  And it helps explain why genuine democracy always will have a hard time of defending itself against determined totalitarian 'rulers' in the world.   

RE: "Duly Noted"

I. There can be no question as to whether the loyalties of Sobel and the Rosenbergs were to foreign powers, namely the Soviet Union. While the Rosenbergs' contribution to the transmission of nuclear-related state secrets is debatable, their treasonous thoughts, acts and potential to cause harm were enough to justify their executions. However, Soviet involvement in the anti-war movement of the 1960s and 1970s does not necessarily taint the entire movement. At the time, and in retrospect, American foreign policy and military/intelligence activities in Cuba and Vietnam were ripe for domestic criticism and opposition.


II. On the contrary, Warsaw Pact plans tended towards a conventional assault. Most plans involving tactical nuclear weapons envisaged a successful NATO attack or counter-attack. Warsaw Pact planners were confounded by the nuclear threat to their advancing forces as well as to the frontline countries - Czechoslovakia, Poland and East Germany. However, WP plans tended to be uncoordinated e.g. a Polish plan (OP-61) prepared for a Polish nuclear attack on East German targets if the DDR proved disloyal, as well as on Denmark and parts of West Germany. Moreover, WP members continued to expand their conventional power until the fall of their regimes. Indeed, actual East German plans were entirely conventional, and useless if Moscow had intended to attack with nuclear weapons first as Mr. Handlery claims. Given the disparity in conventional power, the likeliest user of tactical nuclear weapons (irrespective of the causes of the conflict) would have been NATO. Finally, if the WP offensive succeeded, both sides could be assured of a conventional conflict as the WP would not want to destroy its own forces and conquered territories, and NATO would not want to irradiate Western Europe.