Support for dictatorships with poor human rights records

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by S.A.M., May 21, 2009.

  1. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    Does it affect the social status of women and minorities?

    Does it affect the social progress of a society?

    Does it affect the natural progression of a society to freedom of thought and expression?

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  3. superstring01 Moderator

    Of course.

    The end goal of most "support for dictatorships" is to have a favorable one in power. Their treatment of women and minorities usually doesn't even form a blip on the radar screen.

    Some American supported dictatorships treated their women quite well (compared to other regional nations): South Korea, Iraq (before the war), Chile & Greece ("Regime of Colonels). Others did far worse.

    Usually the most people suffer under dictatorships, so any small gain in certain rights by women is usually lost when considered holistically.

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  5. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    It depends what the alternative is. Not all countries are mature enough for Democracy.
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  7. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    Ah, so its your opinion that some people deserve a dictator?

    Do you have a criteria for what kind of people are better suited to be under dictators with poor human rights records?

    And how this affects the situations outlined in the OP?
  8. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    It can, but I don't notice any strong correlation, in general.


    That progression doesn't seem to occur "naturally," as far as I can tell. Usually it requires quite a lot of effort and struggle, both to attain and then to maintain.
  9. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    History seems to indicate otherwise. As far as I can tell, all societies that started from tribal groups eventually graduated to the individual.
  10. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Huh? In the first place, all societies started from tribal groups. But "the individual" didn't replace them: the nation-state did.
  11. wise acre Registered Senior Member

    How do you become mature with a dictator?
  12. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    The nation state is a relatively new concept. Individuals and their rights predate the nation state in every society
  13. wise acre Registered Senior Member

    tribal groups, such as some of the north american tribes, were really rather individualistic, often much more so than the incoming Europeans. Leaders were leaders only as long as they could maintain the good opinion of the tribe. Armies were very hard to organize and maintain because people simply lost interest or did not support the cause. Even the religions were evolving and changing via different individuals and their experiences.

    Compared to the Europeans, who should somehow be later in the progression, they were vastly more individualistic, in fact some scholars think that this rubbed off on what came to be called americans along with some of the democratic ideas of some of the Eastern tribes.

    I don't see a simple progession at all. I see dipping into various forms of fascism and then out, and a general trend toward rigid, hierarchical organized religions that are extremely top down - but also countertrends even there.
  14. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

    "Religion is absolutely no different; in fact, it is dimensionally symmetrical to a dictatorship. The same parameters, from which dictatorship was algorithmically programmed, are also existentially fundamental to religion. It too is embedded with this authoritarian self-narcissism, except the alter ego of the normal mortal dictator is now a transformed immortal deity, called God. This God, like the dictator, has revealed himself through the establishment – his branded dictatorship – of religion. In this latter dictatorship, the subject [believer] cannot question the authority or decree of the dictator [God]. He/she must abide by all the eternally mandated rules brought forth, as would happen in a normal mortally-ruled regime. If the believer questions the authority of God, just as an ideological opponent – in a regular dictatorship – would be imprisoned and tortured for his/her beliefs, this immortal dictator [God] too will eternally imprison and torture his subject of opposition [in hell] for questioning his authority. The unbeliever is the ‘second writer’, from the vantage point of the religious-fascistic institution. In God’s polity, there are no ‘second writers’ because God has reserved himself as the absolute ‘writer’.

    The logical parallels between religion and dictatorship are uncannily staggering. An ideally sought rationalistic society can only be achieved by keeping the wheels of dynamic thinking, rolling in perpetual motion. The intended aim of a dictatorship is to permanently fracture the axle which allows these wheels to rotate, in the first place. Religion, since the dawn of mankind, has been tantamount in succeeding this operation. It would be in the best service of mankind, to eradicate this epidemically spreading disease from the face of the earth. We should not be devolving into backwardness; rather we should be evolving into infinite scientific-consciousness of the universe. Once we cleanse our minds from this leeching ignorance [religion] that has hindered the train of human progress, then – and only then – will the cosmos be the reach of our limits."
  15. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member


    What you're talking about sounds very much like the jirga system in the Pashtuns. While individual merit strongly determined who the alpha male was, the job of this alpha male was primarily to hammer down any nail that was out of sync . The concept of the co-existence of contradictory opinions[or tribes] without the need for one to be subservient to the other is very much a transition out of the tribal mode. Hence while the Pashtun were historically warriors, they transitioned out of their tribal mode enough to only fight in self defense rather than to offensively invade other terroritories. The assualt on and destruction of their social structure has reversed this trend and they have regressed back to their tribal structures [as the Taliban] after thousands of years, where they now enforce their values on surrounding tribes and ignore the tolerance they had advanced to.
  16. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    No, not at all. The concept of "rights" did not appear in history until well after the rise of the state.
  17. wise acre Registered Senior Member

    To me the incursion of what some people call civilization was basically the dominance of one way of doing things, and this eradicated tribes. This has happened pretty much everywhere in the world.
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    Not so much a matter of what people deserve

    I don't think it's so much a matter of deserving a dictator as it is an outcome of coinciding circumstances.

    Consider for counterpoint the United States. With Obama's election, we heard a lot of sabre rattling about everything from secession to open revolution. Indeed, some have even attempted to blame a couple of mass murders on the shooters' responses to the fact of the Obama administration.

    And while that latter is largely a misplaced sentiment, the fact remains that there were many who predicted chaos and open revolt in response to Obama. The question there becomes, "Well, how close are we to open revolt?"

    In present-day Iraq, the establishment of a representative government, a democratic republic of some devising, is a precarious proposition. With Pakistan, even more so.

    The main circumstance to note is that people settle political differences with guns in far too many cases. There are a number of factors contributing to that, not the least of which are economic instability and insufficient educational infrastructure. When these two conditions coincide, as they often do, the People's collective ability to cope with adversity invests in more direct solutions.

    Looking back to the United States, think of the gay rights argument. Yeah, sure, I want justice and equality for my gay neighbors now. But I also know it's not coming for another five years at the absolute best, and probably not for ten to twenty years in a more realistic projection. But I do have faith that "truth will out" and justice will prevail. It seems counterproductive to me to pick up a rifle or hurl a Molotov over that one.

    Or historically, look at the white counterpoint to the Civil Rights movement in the American south. The people dressing up in hoods and shooting the shit out of blacks, throwing bombs into churches, and committing other atrocities weren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer. The better-educated segments of the population generally supported equal rights.

    The poverty and lack of education among a people abroad are not necessarily their own faults. Where the hell were the Iranians supposed to turn? The Shah was backed by the most powerful Empire in history. One charismatic son of a bitch came along, was able to muster up enough support, and everyone else hopped on. Yes, they overthrew the Shah. Out of the fryer, into the fire. It's hard to blame the current generation of Iranians for the fact of their idiot President, and given the climate, it's even hard to blame the mullahs and imams entirely.

    It's not that they deserve a petty thug dictator, but rather that the people are lost in a cycle of force and retribution. They need to be able not only to see that more civilized methods are actually effective, but also to understand what they are seeing. Given the right coincidence of circumstances, dictatorship becomes inevitable.
  19. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    I think its not so much one way of doing things, as the leisure of doing things due to a resolution of the problem of scavenging for food. The city was a result of settlement which was a result of agriculture, which in turn, was the result of recognising the value of growing grain, vegetables and fruit as a monoculture for food.
  20. wise acre Registered Senior Member

    But the Northeast Natives in the US had more leisure time than the vast majority of the incoming immigrants. They also had better hygiene and better diets - more variety, fresher.

    Peasants supporting those cities worked nightmare hours.
    And much of the city workers did also.

    The incoming immigrants noticed that the Natives considered children a separate category. They were coddled and pampered and allowed to play. This was seen negatively by the immigrants - who are less modern by many of our standards.

    IOW the children had the leisure of childhood.

    and the adults had the leisure to give this to them.
  21. MysteriousStranger Banned Banned

    Here in England I have a dictator. He's called the collective conscience.

    We english used to have a King that we could atleast take pride in serving. The only thing I feel for serving a mass of weak, mediocre people is shame.

    Yet there are few strong people left in the world to establish something greater than a Democracy.
  22. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    You took a wrong turn in the semantics. "State" and "nation-state" are not the same thing. The 19th century is considered by many to be the dawn of the nation-state, whereas the earliest civilizations were states. There were also city-states in ancient Greece and other civilizations.
    It may have eradicated some individual tribes, but it certainly has not eradicated the tribe. Abrahamic religion reinforces our tribal instinct, and the Christian, Muslim and Jewish tribes still fight one another.
  23. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Americans think of tribal groups as like the North American reds north of Mexico - most of them well known for their insistence on individual liberty, tolerance of differences of opinion and political independence, etc.

    The unusual nature of the common political thought in the US early on, the insistence on individual political liberty and freedom of expression and the like, is thought by many to be at least partly a consequence of the Church and State oppressed colonial's experience with tribal entities such as the Iroquois Nation.

    Apparently, tribal groups elsewhere behave differently. Any idea why?

    On topic, the general absence of dictatorship, dominant oppressive males with controlling power, and so forth, among the NA reds east of the Rockies and north of the Rio Grande, lends a much different feel to American history. There are no warlords in it, as we know them now and read about them in the past of other peoples.

    And the denial of representative government in favor of support for dictators with poor human rights records is current policy for the US, as well as past venture - in the Caspian Sea oil and gas basin, for example, the US is backing utter scum.
    Last edited: May 28, 2009

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