You can’t handle the truth!

In the film A Few Good Men Colonel Jessep speaks the often quoted, though perhaps not very well understood, “the truth? You can’t handle the truth.”

I used to consider myself more right-wing in that I was (and still am) a libertarian. Though as I have grown older I have come round to more of a lefty socialist world view. However, my attitude towards the military has changed in the opposite direction.

As a libertarian I was anti-military. My view was that we should just let other countries get on with it and you should not be classified as a hero for taking government money to go murder black and brown people. Consistent with my libertarianism, though not a view in line with what many other people on the right would think, most of whom want to see aggressive military spending.

As a socialist, I am now not no so sure. If we are going to say that the machinery of governments should be used to maximise equality instead of liberty, then why should it stop at an arbitrary national border? Why insist that money be taken from the rich and given to the poor, while at the same time reconciling North Koreans to their horrible fate of oppression and starvation?

Of course one message to take away from this is that the whole left-right issues are not so easily pigeon-holed. But also, that the left-right view points are often inconsistent within themselves – the right do not want the state to interfere (except in the bedroom), the left do want the state to interfere (but not in the bedroom).

Back on the video though, it illustrates an important point. This issue is not an easy one. How do you balance the desire for peace with the desire for justice and liberty?



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This entry was posted on Friday, August 29th, 2014 at 11:46 am and is filed under Religion & Politics, Thoughts, Video. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.