Scott Shane discovers ethical mentors by Political Cynic

In the New York Times of  July 14, 2012 under News Analysis appears Scott Shane's essay titled The Moral Case for Drones. This long apologia for the use of drones is not even surprising, in it's convoluted defense of the notion and practice of American Exceptionalism. All of this garnished by appropriate quotations from technocrats identified as experts in the field of warfare, not to speak of an attributed ethical preeminence, and human rights organizations, it adds to the attempt to anesthetize the moral indignation about the killing of innocents, and the self-aggrandizing, indeed authoritarian increase of presidential power. Habeas corpus was once the great defense against the authoritarians, who sought cover under the guise of  a carefully cultivated republican virtue. But that is no more, the dubious cause of war has emboldened those thinkers,writers, political actors who foment and stage manage the crisis to full political advantage: an increase in power that recognizes their will to power as sovereign, all in the name of the preservation of the state. The state remade, argumentatively re-framed, by the imperatives of that stage managed crisis.                The War on Terror in it's current expression has found a convenient and more precise weapon of war in the drone, rather than massive invasion and occupation that is cost prohibitive and undermines the primacy of American virtue. In the place of that self-defeating exercise of naked but expensive power comes the drone, as answer. Mr. Shane could have framed the ethical argument in terms of the long tradition of ethical thinkers that began with Plato and Aristotle, as an exercise of grounded philosophical thought.  A critical reader of Mr. Shane's essay might conclude that he quotes from the technocrats of the National Security State because he already has his answers, but he simply needs to find the proper evidence to support those conclusions. Everything was changed by September 11, 2001, it emboldened the authoritarians in our midst.
Political Cynic          

About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.'
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