Theory and Card Games for Neocons
great minds behind the trample of Iraq are looking for the next
big diversion, and it could be the stomping of Syria. We can’t waste
time thinking about where we have been, either 20 years ago or yesterday,
places like Kabul or Baghdad, such a mess, just not photogenic or
fun anymore. It’s on to a new scene, the next eye-grabbing trailer.
It’s all about entertainment anyway. The great minds are constantly
working for us the viewer, to keep us munching the popcorn and shushing
the guys sitting next to us so we can enjoy the movie.
the well-staged briefings in the new CENTCOM theater, to the excited
and on-the-team reporters, pleasantly rumpled and doe-eyed from
another night in bed with the troops, to the deck of cards we are
now shuffling with the Iraqi
55 most wanted, it’s all about fun. Please pay no attention
to the ragged civilians or our tattered Constitution ailing in the
the recent hustle and hubris in today’s U.S. foreign policy can
be difficult. We might look to chaos theory – popularly understood
as a butterfly flapping its wings in say…Washington, affecting in
unknown ways, say …the societal and governmental systems in the
Arab world. In an introduction to basic chaos theory, one would
probably review the four classes of dynamic systems. Class I behavior
converges on "zero" or death, Class II behavior leads
to history building upon itself, Class III is unpredictable randomness,
and Class IV is a mixture of the first two "ordered" classes
with Class III chaos such that behavior is ordered on the "edge
of chaos." Class IV systems are often seen as the natural state
of adaptive complex systems, whether biological or organizational.
political thought – to the extent that it constitutes anything at
all beyond cleverly cloaked power-mad imperialism under neocon rule
– fancies itself to be actually applying some form of chaos theory.
The idea of the reverse domino effect (Iraq becomes a self-ruling
peaceful democracy in a single country, then the neighbors follow)
is a part of this mantra. Unfortunately, the neocons, not being
mathematicians or otherwise having any interest in bottom line truth,
have confused the idea of inflicting chaos with their delicate butterfly
wings in Washington with chaos theory as a mechanism of global development.
four classes of dynamic behavior are revealing.
Classes I and II are the ordered systems. Class I is governed by
a "unifying principle or attractor" or doomsday scenario.
Notable characteristics of the Class I include "progressive
marginalization; contextually determined behaviour and absence of
choice; …traditional values (of ancestors) perceived as quaint and
of little current relevance. Possibly the black hole of individual
or collective self-righteousness." Psychologically, Class I
is sometimes associated with the elderly, those near death, and
Class I dynamic systems are always terminal.
II is the second order-based system, and it is associated with "…established
patterns of order … Patterns of rights, obligations and constraints.
Top-down advocacy/imposition of behavioural guidelines…Organized
liberty. Emphasis on collective consensus. Time-tested cultural,
parental (family) values." Class II is sometimes psychologically
associated with maturity and adulthood.
III is seen in "Chaotic behavioural patterns. Impermanence
of social structures. Unconstrained freedom of choice. Emphasis
on individualism. Postmodernist value relativism." It is psychologically
linked with adolescence, youth and immaturity.
IV is "Emergent behavioural patterns of higher orders of complexity.
Surprise. Innovation. Higher orders of consensus. Grounding of new
values." It is associated with "social innovation and
the emergence of new patterns of relationship (partnerships, coalitions,
teams, groups, etc) but especially that which ensures renewal (including
neocon worldview is sometimes proposed as Class IV style innovation,
with a risk-embracing strategy for changing the world, breaking
a few eggs to make one of Mr. Perle’s soufflés, as it were.
Their strategy is to destroy the current state and society in the
Middle East, except for Israel, and in the new undergrowth, like
the scrub trees that replace the Ponderosa after a western forest
fire, they hope to find something they like.
interesting problem with Class I, II and III dynamic systems is
that in them, "strategic
planning is not possible." Chaotic new inputs are not systemically
recognized or incorporated by the ordered classes, and in the case
of Class III, order simply does not exist with true chaos. Now,
careful reading of the class descriptions might lead you to think
that the Class III adolescent approach is matched up with neoconservativism.
If you are very astute, you will notice that the Class I actually
more closely characterizes the neocon philosophy and practice.
brings us to the problem. Whether Class I or Class III, strategy
and strategic planning is impossible. Yet, we are assured that the
great minds are indeed implementing a strategy, and we must only
trust in it to be politically correct and live prosperously and
at peace. Given this insistence on the part of the neocon establishment,
we must conclude that, in fact, the neocons are laboring selflessly
for the rest of us under a false premise. They believe they are
working strategically towards a Class IV order that maximizes "good"
chaos, but in fact are deliriously lost with one foot in a Class
III Rousseau-esque landscape of impermanence of social structures
and unconstrained freedom of choice, and the other in an open grave.
– one thing should be clear. The label of "paleo" conservative
makes sense when coming from these intellectual juveniles with old
men’s bodies. It must indeed appear to them that the classic liberal
viewpoints are passé, and that they, safe in their taxpayer-
or trust-funded and politically connected livelihoods, have discovered
an easy alternative to their "parent’s" presumption that
improvements in the human condition are gained through hard work
and a gracious enduring appreciation for our fellow men and women
as brothers and sisters.
God these neo-cons are changelings, and do not spring from conservatism,
but instead are the ugly offspring of an abnormal and unsatisfying
mating of imperial ideologues Woodrow Wilson, Scoop Jackson and
for the rest of us, the neocon embrace of Class I and Class III
behavioral models guarantee the philosophy and its virulent carriers
a wild ride ending in certain death. The question is how much chaos
and collective self-righteousness can we all take before imperial
neo-conservativism totally disintegrates?
genealogy and complicated theories are so boring. We started out
looking for a diversion. While we wait to attack Syria, how about
a nice card game for the neocons? I am not completely sure of the
rules for the 55 cards in the "let’s go after the Iraqi regime
evil-doers" game, so I can’t recommend it. I understand poker
is deadly for the stubborn and the arrogant, so that’s out. Let’s
see, we want a game with simple rules, entertaining to watch and
play, has a curious moralistic bent, relies on winner-take-all and
involves violence and destruction….
I’ve got it – Egyptian
ratscrew! Even though it doesn’t have a thing to do with Middle
Eastern countries or rats or even loveless copulation…. somehow
I think the neocons will pick it up very quickly!
Kwiatkowski [send her mail]
is a recently retired USAF lieutenant colonel, who spent her final
four and a half years in uniform working at the Pentagon. She now
lives with her freedom-loving family in the Shenandoah Valley.
© 2003 LewRockwell.com