Starchild, reading your post I thought, on the face of it, the question
seemed like a simple answer was forthcoming but while contemplating a response,
like peeling an onion, I found the response much deeper and interesting and
worthy of introspection. I also learned a new word "hegemony." Thank you for that.
I believe rights are God given and government is there to protect them, not
create or deal them out. I think we agree here.
The question of nationalism seems to be the problem you see in the use of "
we" and "us" as you cite a real fear of national governments and the pain they
have caused. My gut response is to defend nationalism because for years one
worlders and socialist's have been trying to give it a bad name. Unfortunately,
the very word, “nationalism,” evokes negative connotations — associated, as it
can be, with flag-waving, goose-stepping rallies at Nuremberg. However, the
wholly American concept of nationalism — or “Americanism,” to employ a more
appropriate term — is a unifying rather than a divisive force. “Americanism”
gently reminds us that, despite differences in race, religious background, and
ethnic origin, we are all one and the same under the law. We are bound by the
motto “E pluribus unum” (“From the many, one”).
George Orwell wrote a great essay on nationalism back in the 40's. In it, he
warned of that nationalism should not be confused with patriotism. He argued
that nationalism goes hand in hand with the desire for power and prestige where
patriotism is a devotion to a particular place or way of life with no desire
to force it upon others. So maybe, American-Patriatism would be a better thing
for me to argue? American-Patriatism should be comfortable with creative
chaos, understanding that freedom and liberty sometimes are messy. Regardless,
"we" are Americans and should cradle and hold dear the things we believe are
right with this great land and work to change the things we think are wrong. Like
some in this group, hating "our" government, seeing black helicopters
everywhere and finding nothing but fault is not conducive to change or recruitment, it
only attracts the loonies.
Live free or die, Michael S.
In a message dated 10/24/03 8:02:10 AM, sfdreamer@... writes:
<< The earlier post I was referring to is copied below. To further
elaborate -- it's difficult (impossible?) to speak about life without
using a frame of reference. But I feel that a national frame of
reference is just about the worst one we could choose. Why? Because
communicating in a particular frame of reference will strengthen that
worldview in people's minds.
Given that the worst problems in the world are due to the actions of
national governments, the last thing we ought to be doing is using a
nationalist frame of reference that reinforces their hegemony.
Nationalism is the lifeblood of national governments. Without the sense
of allegiance that "their" peoples tend to feel toward them, what power
would they possess?
Libertarianism also holds that if such things as rights exist, they
exist universally, i.e. we do not believe that rights are created by
governments. If they exist, they must exist naturally in each of us.
But the nationalist (as opposed to a globalist or universalist) frame
of reference undermines this view of the inherent and universal nature
of rights, and suggest that what rights you have ought to be a function
of which government's jurisdiction you fall under.
Yours in liberty,
<<< Starchild >>> >>