Talk:Enemies of freedom

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enemies of freedom is a phrase in current use by George W. Bush and the Bush administration. However, there is nothing novel about, as it has been employed in one context or another for decades, if not centuries.

but when it comes from the Bush head, you know that he is referring to people whose freedoms he is taking away, immediately or in the near future; much like when you detect him uttering "enemies of the environment", you know that he refers to those who are attempting to protect the environment from his destruction. This style of definitions is all quite clear by now, and persistent; that's how he defines the two and only two sides of all controversies for which he claims a position.

The following are excerpts gleaned while researching the phrase which have been placed here for possible incorporation in the main article at a later date.

It's Ronald Reagan . . . again! i.e., "US President Ronald Reagan's crusade against the "evil empire" of the 1980s."

"And as we renew ourselves here in our own land, we will be seen as having greater strength throughout the world. We will again be the exemplar of freedom and a beacon of hope for those who do not now have freedom. To those neighbors and allies who share our freedom, we will strengthen our historic ties and assure them of our support and firm commitment. We will match loyalty with loyalty. We will strive for mutually beneficial relations. We will not use our friendship to impose on their sovereignty, for our own sovereignty is not for sale. As for the enemies of freedom, those who are potential adversaries, they will be reminded that peace is the highest aspiration of the American people. We will negotiate for it, sacrifice for it; we will not surrender for it -- now or ever. Our forbearance should never be misunderstood. Our reluctance for conflict should not be misjudged as a failure of will. When action is required to preserve our national security, we will act. We will maintain sufficient strength to prevail if need be, knowing that if we do so we have the best chance of never having to use that strength. Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today's world do not have. It is a weapon that we as Americans do have. Let that be understood by those who practice terrorism and prey upon their neighbors." --Ronald Reagan (1981)[1]

From Reagan's first inaugural address, January 20, 1981.

"Another, more familiar paradox, first implicitly formulated by Plato, is the paradox of freedom. Unqualified freedom, like unqualified tolerance, is not only self-destructive but bound to produce its opposite - for if all restraints were removed there would be nothing whatever to stop the strong enslaving the weak (or meek). So complete freedom would bring about the end of freedom, and therefore proponents of complete freedom are in actuality, whatever their intentions, enemies of freedom. Popper points more particularly to the paradox of economic freedom, which makes possible the unrestrained exploitation of the poor by the rich, and results in the almost complete loss of economic freedom by the poor. Here again there 'must be a political remedy - a remedy similar to the one which we use against physical violence. We must construct social institutions, enforced by the power of the state, for the protection of the economically weak from the economically strong....This, of course, means that the principle of nonintervention, of an unrestrained economic system, has to be given up; if we wish freedom to be safeguarded, then we must demand that the policy of unlimited economic freedom be replaced by the planned economic intervention of the state. We must demand that unrestrained capitalism give way to an economic interventionism.*' (The Open Society and its Enemies, vol. ii, p. 125)"

Extracts from "Philosophy and the Real World : An Introduction to Karl Popper" by Bryan Magee : Published by Open Court Pub Co, July 1985.

February 8, 2003, Joseph I. Lieberman: "But if September 11th has taught us anything, it's that none of us can retreat behind borders because terror recognizes no borders. In today's world, enemies of freedom anywhere are a threat to safety everywhere."

The 39th Munich Conference on Security Policy, Bayerischer Hotel, Munich, Germany, February 7-9, 2003.

From the Claremont Institute blog (March 2003):[2]

"... short article by Tom Krannawitter shortly after the attacks of September 11. My favorite line:

"'If the enemies of freedom wish to discuss these things, we will demonstrate why their position is unreasonable, unjust, and evil. But if our enemies refuse to talk, if they refuse to heed the counsels of reason, and choose instead to make war, we will make sure they get it.'"

"There are a vast number of contradictions permeating Neoliberal political economy. One of them is between the requirement of a free market without any sort of interference and on the other hand the appeal to protectionist barriers by certain governments. In fact, Neoliberalism is not truly liberal, but a form of a strong state interventionism with a bonus: that intervention is always in favor of the few wealthiest and most powerful people. Another important contradiction is the one between the demand of non-state intervention for helping the poor and correcting inequalities and asking the state to invest money for paying more repressive forces (police, army, paramilitary forces). Then, it should not surprise us Popper's shocking claim: "No freedom to the enemies of freedom". Needless to say that the enemies of freedom for him are mainly those opposing to the free market. It is exactly this line of thinking the one that Hayek used for legitimating Pinochet's dictatorship. No doubt: even political freedom and the will of the majority must and is sacrificed in the altar of the freedom of the market."

Globalized Neoliberalism: Refutation and Debacle, Ricardo J. Gómez, California State University.

"The infamous Reign of Terror ('that eminently logical application of the Enlightenment claimed 40,000 victims in 1793-1794') began when the 'Law of the Suspects' was passed by the Assembly. It condemned to death 'all who by their actions, by their connections, speakings, writings, have shown themselves to be ... enemies of freedom.' France was turning into one large, grisly graveyard."

Statism Portends The Last Great Revolution.

"The enemies of freedom do not argue; they shout and they shoot." ~ William Ralph (Dean) Inge, End of an Age (1948)[3]

"Communism was heir to the French Revolution. Although Marx, like Hegel, rejected French rationalism with its abstract concept of freedom, he took over Hegel's concrete universal, thus reducing freedom to the presumed essential elements of the classification 'man' and ignoring all the concrete aspects of life that give it color and intensity. Freedom could exist only under communism. Marx claimed to note the expression of freedom on the faces of the workers who took over Paris during the Commune. Although freedom was intended for all, regardless of race or ethnicity, it could exist for none short of communism. Hence, constraining the enemies of freedom was not a restriction of freedom." Worse Than the Evil Empire by Morton A. Kaplan, October 1998.

Islamism and Civil Society: "The Islamists were accused of being enemies of civil society, enemies of democracy and enemies of freedom of speech, because they are enemies of civil society etc etc." Int'l Forum for Islamic Dialogue, April 23, 1999.

"For one of the symptoms of happiness is a lively curiosity that finds others as interesting and worth knowing as oneself, and it is only by removing the obvious causes of misery, poverty and social injustice, that a democracy like the United States can protect itself against the specious appeals of the enemies of freedom." The Nation, 25 March 1939.[4]

"The primary audience for Tocqueville's book, as he makes clear, is not Americans and partisans of democracy but rather Frenchmen who are likely as not to be democracy's enemies. In the second part of the Introduction, he explains how the French Revolution has led gentle and virtuous men to oppose civilization and innovation, and men of religion to become enemies of freedom. Tocqueville's appeal to the providential nature of democracy would presumably appeal most to this audience, who might thus be dissuaded from their belief that the broad march of democracy could be reversed through the activities of a 'single generation'." The March of Equality by Francis Fukuyama (2000).

"Of course, the 'return to the Real' can be given different twists: one already hears some conservatives claim that what made us so vulnerable is our very openness - with the inevitable conclusion lurking in the background that, if we are to protect our 'way of life,' we will have to sacrifice some of our freedoms which were 'misused' by the enemies of freedom. This logic should be rejected tout court: is it not a fact that our First World 'open' countries are the most controlled countries in the entire history of humanity? In the United Kingdom, all public spaces, from buses to shopping malls, are constantly videotaped, not to mention the almost total control of all forms of digital communication.

"Along the same lines, Rightist commentators like George Will also immediately proclaimed the end of the American 'holiday from history' - the impact of reality shattering the isolated tower of the liberal tolerant attitude and the Cultural Studies focus on textuality. Now, we are forced to strike back, to deal with real enemies in the real world... However, WHOM to strike? Whatever the response, it will never hit the RIGHT target, bringing us full satisfaction. The ridicule of America attacking Afghanistan cannot but strike the eye: if the greatest power in the world will destroy one of the poorest countries in which peasant barely survive on barren hills, will this not be the ultimate case of the impotent acting out? Afghanistan is otherwise an ideal target: a country ALREADY reduced to rubble, with no infrastructure, repeatedly destroyed by war for the last two decades... one cannot avoid the surmise that the choice of Afghanistan will be also determined by economic considerations: is it not the best procedure to act out one's anger at a country for which no one cares and where there is nothing to destroy?"

Welcome to the Desert of the Real, Slavoj Zizek, October 13, 2001.

12/12/03 06:48 (EST) AI