Thursday, May 2, 2024




Peter Schultz


                  What does it tell you about politics that people like Generals McCrystal and Petraeus fare so well? Are treated as if they were godlike?


                  What does it tell you about politics that wars are so common? Or that war “heroes” thrive politically? Or that assassinations are often honored? Or that assassins are often honored?


                  We avoid these questions because they make us uncomfortable. They are too troubling because they shake our faith in, our belief in the political. We prefer to go on believing in, affirming the political as the source of human betterment rather than the source of human corruption. And, yet, the very best political orders have been characterized by, riven with corruption. “War is the health of the state.” But it isn’t the health of human beings.


                  Michael Hastings got close to raising these questions – in fact, he got too close to raising them, as did Socrates and Aristotle. Don’t make the mistake of failing to see that political health is built on death and destruction (e.g., a treasonous war in 1776).


                  Perhaps Nixon came to see that political health in the United States required his “destruction,” which is when he resigned. Perhaps JFK came to see the same thing. Certainly, Lincoln did.



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