“New Rules for a New Crisis,” by Thomas Barnett Deleted Scenes, 2004, http://www.thomaspmbarnett.com/delscenes/scene22.htm.
“Reviewing Deleted Scenes Part III,” by Mark Safranski, Zen Pundit, 23 October 2004, http://zenpundit.blogspot.com/2004/10/reviewing-deleted-scene-part-iii-to.html.
crazy Pat: Judges worse than 9-11,” by kos, Daily Kos, 2 May 2005, http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2005/5/2/13442/06486.
Boy, the dude is off his rockers.
Federal judges are a more serious threat to America than Al Qaeda and the Sept. 11 terrorists, the Rev. Pat Robertson claimed yesterday.
“Over 100 years, I think the gradual erosion of the consensus that’s held our country together is probably more serious than a few bearded terrorists who fly into buildings,” Robertson said on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.”
“I think we have controlled Al Qaeda,” the 700 Club host said, but warned of “erosion at home” and said judges were creating a “tyranny of oligarchy.”
Confronted by Stephanopoulos on his claims that an out-of-control liberal judiciary is the worst threat America has faced in 400 years – worse than Nazi Germany, Japan and the Civil War – Robertson didn’t
“Yes, I really believe that,” he said. “I think they are destroying the fabric that holds our nation together.”
It used to be that “9-11 changed everything”, but apparently that pales in comparison to the horrors of 7 filibustered judges and the whole of the Republican-dominated judiciary.
Robert’s an easy target, but he is right here. Given that Pat Robertson naturally believes the judges issues is very important, the issue comes down to what is more important: horizontal scenarios or vertical scenarios . That is, what are more harmful to American society: “bolts from the blue” or “long, drawn-out attacks”?
Robertson’s views are not extreme. The esteemed Mark Safranski calls the consequences overrestrictive visa policies potentially worse than 9/11 economically
When budding scientists and mathematicians from India, China, South Korea, Russia- many of whom after studying in American universities decide to stay here permanently and contribute to our economic and technological preeminence – decide a U.S. visa isn’t worth the security restrictions hassle, we are shooting ourselves in the foot. Somehow I think we can take precautions to screen out young Islamist males belonging to Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Muslim Brotherhood and al Qaida without targeting 180 I.Q. Asian physicists and genetic engineers. Long term this trend represents an economic disaster far worse than 9/11 – we depend on foreigners to fill about half of our annual hard science Ph.d slots – there are no ” substitute goods ” for these kinds of brains. If they aren’t here, they’re not here and critical opportunities simply get lost.
While Grand Strategist Thomas PM Barnett says that horizontal scenarios harm horizontal systems (like American society) more than vertical scenarios:
Rule #6: Vertical scenarios harm vertical systems more, while horizontal scenarios harm horizontal systems more. This rule simply says that Rule #5 is basically wrong, despite what people in both systems tend to believe. In reality, vertical strikes can do little damage to truly distributed systems. If someone wipes out the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court one afternoon, nothing would really change in our country in terms of our ability to maintain rule. Yes, it would be a huge shock, but it would not be hard to replace all those leaders rather quickly. I could find you 535 ex-senators and representatives living within a ten-mile radius of the Capitol itself who could easily step back into rule, tell me how hard it would be to find nine lawyers in Washington who think they are smart enough to sit on the Supreme Court! But even beyond those facile examples lies the reality that we have 50 “farm teams” around the country, each complete with their own set of executives, supreme courts, and legislative branches. You if you wipe out our national leadership you do not really kill our capacity for leadership, because we have got more political leaders than we can count! What really stresses out horizontal systems like the U.S. are the horizontal scenarios that never seem to end, like a Great Depression, which really only ended when the vertical shock of Pearl Harbor put the country on another pathway. In contrast, vertical systems like Saddam Hussein’s regime can really be dismembered quite profoundly simply by taking out the leadership. Remember the “most wanted” deck of cards? That said we really needed to nail only about 50 bad actors in Iraq and we would have eliminated the bulk of the Baath party rule.
One may agree or disagree with Mr. Robertson’s concern about activist judges. But it is not extreme to say a “boring” long-running trend may be much worse than 9/11.
Update: America Blog, Dada Head, Escaton, Supreme Irony miss the point
Update 2: Larwyn wrote to say that Ed at Captain’s Quarters picked up the story. He’s wrong too. At least Riehl World gets it.