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Republican “kamakizes”?

In response to a post about Obama’s chances to get reelected on Salon, BlackFedoraMan asks the following:

I have to admit the original Republican strategy seems like a stroke of genius now: prevent the president from fixing the economy, and upon reelection, blame the president for not fixing the economy.

I can’t imagine why it hasn’t been tried before. Perhaps because previous Republicans have never been so completely free of concern for the country’s wellbeing? Or perhaps because the electorate has never been so completely blind to such blatant foul play?

My response, which I stand by, is the following:

Because Jihadists believe the end justifies the means.

My point is that (many of not most) hard core Republicans honestly believe this is a sort of “holy war”, either literally or for the heart of the nation. When one becomes that invested, particularly with an actual religious overtone, one often finds a way to justify just about any means to ensure victory.

The problem is, holy war begets holy war. In response to an unscrupulous opponent, defenders tend to become unscrupulous. Nothing defines this more clearly than our response to terrorism and the use of things like torture, extrajudicial killings, and extraordinary rendition.


I should add that the fact that these people believe it is a “holy war” and are heartfelt in their position might lead us to have some sympathy (or rather, forgiveness) for their behavior. That is, they’re not simply doing this to be evil (though I do not believe all are honest actors).

That said, people like to make things a “holy war” because it allows them to follow the easy route and “take the gloves off”. It is certainly a convenient source of justification for all sorts of evil in the world.

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