Thursday, August 30, 2018

The Final Solution: Wild Kingdom

Here is one of the many John McCain quotes that have recently been cited: “We never hide from history. We make history.” It’s an arresting observation and directly the opposite of the kind of subterfuges characteristic of current US foreign policy. But the key point is not conservative, liberal, global or isolationist. Realpolitik in the extreme manifestation characteristic of the current administration is basically totally lacking in the notion of overarching principles. It’s the exemplification of Herbert Spencer’s “Social Darwinism.” One of the big hits of the famed soul singer Jerry Butler was "Only the Strong Survive." It’s no wonder that his soubriquet was “the iceman.” And this way of thinking looks at human life as an episode of “Wild Kingdom,” in which the fittest, say the hyena munching on the entrails of a downed giraffe, defines the food chain. It’s nice to think that with the advent of consciousness mankind has evolved a little bit beyond that paradigm. The president's supporters admire him because he has the kind of shock jock mentality that doesn't shy from blatancy. Trump portrays himself as the top dog with international relations devolving into one of those illegal cockfighting rings that you read about in the paper. You don’t have to agree with everything that John McCain had to say to realize that it emanated from a place of principle and exuded adherence to a higher calling.

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