October 10

No Machiavellian Left Behind

Richard Heinberg’s Powerdown: Options for a Post-Carbon World contains the following in a sidebar entitled “Who are the Neocons?”

According to Shadia Drury in Leo Strauss and the American Right, (Griffin, 1999), Strauss advocated an essentially Machiavellian approach to governance. He believed that:

  • A leader must perpetually deceive those being ruled.
  • Those who lead are accountable to no overarching system of morals, only to the right of the superior to rule the inferior.
  • Religion is the force that binds society together, and is therefore the tool by which the ruler can manipulate the masses (any religion will do).
  • Secularism in society is to be supressed, because it leads to critical thinking and dissent.
  • A political system can be stable only if it is united against an external threat, and that if no real threat exists, one should be manufactured.

Among Strauss’s students was Paul Wolfowitz, one of the leading hawks in the US Defense Department, who urged the invasion of Iraq; second-generation students include Newt Gingrich, Clarence Thomas, Irving Kristol, William Bennet, John Ashcroft, and Michael Ledeen.

Ledeen, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and author of Machiavelli on Modern Leadership: Why Machiavelli’s Iron Rules are as Timely and Important Today as Five Centuries Ago (1999), is a policy advisor (via Karl Rove) to the Bush administration.

posted @ 12:40 PM EDT

October 22


In an article in the Oct. 17th edition of The New York Times Magazine, Ron Suskind writes:

In the summer of 2002, after I had written an article in Esquire that the White House didn’t like about Bush’s former communications director, Karen Hughes, I had a meeting with a senior adviser to Bush. He expressed the White House’s displeasure, and then he told me something that at the time I didn’t fully comprehend — but which I now believe gets to the very heart of the Bush presidency.

The aide said that guys like me were “in what we call the reality-based community,” which he defined as people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality.”

posted @ 03:16 PM EDT

Version 2.0.2 of BlueJ Was Released Today

BlueJ is an integrated development environment designed for learning Object Oriented Programming with Java at the introductory level.

posted @ 07:46 PM EDT

October 28

Sox Eclipse Cards, Eighty-Six the Curse

Red Sox

posted @ 12:12 PM EDT

Google Site Search

Just for the heck of it, I added Google Free site search to the dolben.org home page, making a few code changes to comply with XHTML 1.0 and to simplify the form.

Note the chance matching of colors in the Google logo and the cycling picture a little farther down the page.

posted @ 07:52 PM EDT