29 thoughts on “Monday Message Board

  1. @Ikonoclast

    Western reactionaries (white supremacists and so on) are our ISIL and our main internal danger.

    As I said (and McVeigh’s case is proof) Western reactionaries (white supremacists and so on) are our ISIL and our main internal danger. We could go further and say our reactionary elites (capitalist oligarchs and their bought politicians) are our main internal danger.

    If we frame a question like this ‘What is most likely to cause our deaths?’ the answer is probably ‘Heart disease’.
    If we frame a question like this ‘What is most likely to cause our deaths by violence?’ the answer is probably ‘A motor vehicle accident’.
    If we frame a question like this ‘Who is most likely to kill us deliberately?’ the answer is probably ‘An intimate partner’.
    I guess you have some other framing in mind, but it’s not clear what it is.

  2. @J-D

    But apart from the absolutely necessary comment on Icon’s inaccurate assumptions about dangers that did not take into account the statistical reality that there are more likely dangers that ordinary people should be afeared of, what Walleed said did provide a whole lot of confused and ill-informed people with a way to frame things.

    It seems to me from observing some of my locals who had pretty much the same attitude as Jack, that they are badly in need a new way of framing things so that they can forgive themselves for the ‘choices’ they have been making about what it means to be Australian.

  3. @Ikonoclast
    It also depends on what you mean by “our”. It is reasonable to say that right wing extremists of the religious and ethnic majority are the main domestic terrorism risk in the United States (US law enforcement agencies are in general agreement about that), but it’s by no means clear that the same applies in Australia. The history of terrorist incidents in Australia, at least as described by Wikipedia, shows a wide array of perpetrators, of which ‘conventional’ white supremacists or right wingers make up only a minority. In recent years the terrorist plots and attempts in Australia do appear to have been predominantly by Islamist groups. Which is not a reason to demonise Muslims in general, obviously.

  4. @J-D

    What you say about statistical dangers is correct under current peace time conditions in Australia. I doubt it would be correct in Syria for example. It is clear from my framing that I was talking about political-military conflict dangers ranging from all forms of wars, to insurgencies and to politically motivated attacks commonly called “terrorism”. Again, you play the game of semantic pedantry to intentionally misconstrue substantive points.

    If our elites drag us into major war(s), then like the Syrians still in Syria our major dangers will not be heart attacks and car accidents. As well as the statistically-speaking relatively minor dangers of one-off terrorist attacks, we ought to factor in the possibility that the conflagrations our governments cause in the mid-east and elsewhere will spiral out of control into major regional or global wars. These are low probability events but high casualty events if they occur; right up to and including nuclear exchanges.

    In any case, many current major dangers of civil society in Australia (heart attacks, car accidents etc.) would benefit from a reallocation of funds away from illegal and immoral wars and towards public medicine, health, nutrition and exercise as well as towards mass public transport and other safer transport methods (e.g. bicycles). It’s a matter of opportunity costs as Prof. J.Q. correctly reminds us in some of his posts on that topic. Spending a whole lot of money (billions in Australia’s case and trillions in the US case) to make the world less safe, is a really crazy way to spend money. Money is the proxy measurement of course. What we are really mis-spending are real lives, resources, products and services. There’s a huge opportunity cost to all that.

    Footnote to Julie: I made no inaccurate assumptions in this case. My framing was political-military conflict. I have posted in the past about the stats J-D mentioned. I am quite aware of them.

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