Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Egypt: the power of withdrawing consent

...on display now.  Lew Rockwell explains (and the irony of the source is duly noted, isn't it? :-)
Those of the young generation, people too young to remember the collapse of Soviet-bloc and other socialist states in 1989 and 1990, are fortunate to be living through another thrilling example of a seemingly impenetrable state edifice reduced to impotence when faced with crowds demanding freedom, peace, and justice.

There is surely no greater event than this. To see it instills in us a sense of hope that the longing for freedom that beats in the heart of every human being can be realised in our time.

This is why all young people should pay close attention to what is happening in Egypt, to the protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak as well as the pathetic response coming from his imperial partner, the US, which has given him $60 billion in military and secret police aid to keep him in power.

The US is in much the same situation today as the Soviet Union was in 1989, as a series of socialist dominoes toppled. Poland, Romania, Hungary, East Germany, Bulgaria, and Czechoslovakia all experienced dramatic meltdowns, while the Soviet regime, supportive of these systems since the end of the Second World War, sat by helplessly and watched. Leaders made vague statements about the need for peaceful transitions and elections, while the people on the ground completely ignored them.
It is hard to overstate how encouraging these developments are.

Observe.  As Rockwell notes, this has happened before, it is happening now--and it can happen again.  The oppressive State (but I repeat myself) is a house of cards, that is only propped up by our consent.

How to fix that?  There are three basic options available to us:
  • "Work within the system?"  That is the definition of consent.  They own the system;  they are the system.  No good there.
  •  Violent revolt?  That's playing to their strength and strategy;  they're ready for that.  (Aggression is the only thing the State understands.)  Sure, history says that it might work--but only for a time.  (For anyone that doubts that:  please to explain how Americans are here, at this point, now.)  Only acceptable if forced upon us;  the choice of last resort.
  • Withdraw consent?  Well now.  It's possible.  It's effective.  (See above article, for starters.)  And it's inherently more peaceful than either of the previous options:  #1 is "use the State to force the People";  #2 is "use the People to force the State".  #3 is "the People ignore the State until it stops being a dickhead, or (better) goes away entirely".
In the absence of any other options, the bettin' man's choice seems pretty clear, doesn't it?

Take notes.  Then pass 'em on to everyone you know!


Anonymous said...

This is a sad, misguided post. I suppose you think this "withdrawal" of consent means freedom or democracy?

In Eygpt's case it means tyranny far worse than it has experienced or can imagine. It is a replay of Iran before the Shah was removed.

And the world is now a better place?

Kevin Wilmeth said...

"This is a sad, misguided post."

Well then. Anonymous said it, I believe it, that settles it.

"I suppose you think this "withdrawal" of consent means freedom or democracy?"

The fact that you include "or democracy" here is a clear indicator you have no idea what I'm on about.

If this post is "misguided", then this oughta really piss you off. Have fun!