Wednesday, March 7, 2007

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Dealing with the hysterics and the humorless

Let's surf the net to see if anyone's saying something about me that's worth repeating.

Hmmm....well, this person really didn't like my "New New World Order" essay:

Since I am about as far away as any intelligent and rational American can get from the politics of any proposals for a "new world order," let alone a new new world order, my attention was drawn to a " New New World Order" article (my emphasis on "New New"). After reading it, my suspicions about where our local, state and federal politicians are trying to take us was confirmed. That is, We The People of the United States of America appear to be destined -- by our own political leaders, as well as other power-and-money-seeking political leaders of nations throughout the world -- to be a part of their dictatorial grand scheme, i.e., We The People would no longer be living in an independent, sovereign nation under a Constitutional Federal Republic.
You know, you can accuse George W. Bush of a lot of things, but surrendering American sovereignty to some supranational order is not one of them.

UPDATE: Another negative reaction to "Drezler's article" can be found here.

Meanwhile, Amitai Etzioni is upset about how I characterized his organ donation scheme:

I am sorry to see that Mr. Drezner finds this issue a source of ďamusement.Ē Thousands of people die each year needlessly and many more suffered a great deal, because not enough organs are donated, and because the market has been allowed to intrude into the ways they are allocated. (For instance there is a shortage of donated skin for burn victims because skin is sold to plastic surgeons who pay a high fee to use it to make the hyper rich look younger). One personís donations can improve the life of twenty others, if on death organs are made available....

Sadly I fear that we here face the business model of blogging. Some bloggers sell stuff, anything from diapers to baseball cards to soft porn (in Dreznerís case). In order to make money they have to bring buyers to their sites. And those bloggers that succeed in kicking up a fuss, seem to draw a much larger crowd than the reasoned ones, that is make much more money. Is there some other way to finance blogging? Do we need a NPR and PBS for blogging, to ensure civil dialogue?

OK, for the record, I do take the question of organ donation seriously -- which is why I will refer to I thoughtful posts by Kieran Healy and Virginia Postrel on the matter (and click here for why I don't think harangues work all that well on the American psyche).

Amitai Etzioni attacking bloggers for self-promotion? As someone who has been on the receiving end of a steady, unremitting barrage of Etzioni press releases, brochures about Etzioni, and actual Etzioni publications, no, I'm afraid I can't take that criticism seriously at all.

[What about the soft porn allegations?--ed. I can only assume that Professor Etzioni read this post from a few years ago. Repeatedly.]

posted by Dan on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM


At least we spelled his name right, which is more Etzioni did for Kieran Healy.

posted by: Virginia Postrel on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

I don't think the first comment was saying that the government of the USA does not have sovereignty in world affairs, but that the people don't have sovereignty over their own government. And this is very true. Just on the basis of it, it is quite silly to consider 1 vote every 2, 4 and 6 years is enough to represent the views we all have on the thousands of issues that affect our lives. Yet, on this basis we call ourselves a "democracy." At to that the imperial nature of our government (executive, congress and the courts), and the lack on respect they have for the citizens (why should they respect us, we let them get away with everything!) and it is totally true what the comment said.

Maybe we need citizen councils like Libya has? or some other way for people to be empowered more then through one vote every couple years. Because this system we have is not enough, and is especially representative of power, not the people...

posted by: tom on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

"tom"--that's because our governmental system is a Republic, not a direct Athenian-style democracy. If you have issues with that, please take it to the Supreme Court and have the constitution thrown out in order to satisfy your own twisted desires.

Drezner, I looked all over your website and couldn't find ANY soft porn for sale, so what is that guy talking about?

posted by: Useless Sam Grantn on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

What about the "soft porn" comment? You just going to let that slide? Don't sully the Drezner name man. Have some pride.

posted by: Jay on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

I agree; if we're gonna have soft porn, then well, let's have some soft porn! (none of that hard stuff, please.)

posted by: Klug on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

You know, you can accuse George W. Bush of a lot of things, but surrendering American sovereignty to some supranational order is not one of them.

Certainly on issues of immigration, border security (see the North American Security Union or some such) and perhaps even trade he is willing to give up elements of sovereignity -- whether to appease the US Chamber of Commerce or internal organizations is another question.

As to the poster's comment, I don't know that she is actually commenting on the piece at hand. However the overall point is correct -- elites do see any sort of locally derived public policy which might interfere with 'the Market' as a threat to be stamped out. From local control over demographics (e.g. immigration restriction) , to perserving agricultural land (e.g. farm subsidies ) , to pollution controls, 'Washington Consensus' types really really fear policy choices made by local majorities. There are of course good reasons for that, the more extensive a polity the more control is in the hands of the self-interested and those who have time and means to access info.

posted by: Mitchell Young on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

What is that you say? No soft porn to be found. We'll then perhaps the good professor would be so kind as to provide a few more Selma Hayek pics.

But the rest seems like little more than sour grapes. And how foolish of Etizioni to decry the less than civil dialogue (in his opinion) and in the next paragraph participate in exactly that?!

One academic got his idea rejected by another and now feels compelled to retaliate on a much lower level.

posted by: Phocion on 03.07.07 at 10:56 PM [permalink]

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