"Principle" has a price though you may never know who pays.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006
The Belmont Club: Childhood's End: "Really principled behavior requires a willingness to sacrifice and suffer in exchange for restricting certain methods of warfare in order to preserve certain principles. Do we think wiretapping the enemy without warrants is dangerous? Then let's restrict it, fully understanding that it will make the war longer, allow threats to form undetected, even cost 'innocent lives'. Either that or embark upon some tradeoff with which society feels comfortable. But never, never is it possible to demand the free lunch. To say: bring the boys home but don't abandon Iraq; we support the troops, but don't allow them to shoot unless actually shot at; prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction but leave it to the United Nations. Each of these demands spoken simultaneously contains the seed of a contradiction. The intelligent thing is to recognize this and make intelligent choices about what we are prepared to give up and at what price. The alternative is to do what has been done up until now. Make impossible demands and insist that they all be fulfilled."

2 comments:

Syl said...

How could I presume to add anything to that except 'Amen'.

MeaninglessHotAir said...

Adolescents don't need to maintain logical consistency in their opinions; they only need to fight against Dad.