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View Diary: Ian Welsh: “The coming catastrophes and the Rawlsian veil of ignorance” (59 comments)

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  •  Auden wrote, "We must love one another or die" in (8+ / 0-)

    1939, but I can't remember whether it was before or after the war started, although my (vague) memory is that it was only days or weeks before 9/1/1939.  I remember reading the poem that line is in for the first time just before MLK's assassination in that year of disasters, 1968.  Unfortunately, we seem to have come out of the Medgar Evers-to-Vietnam-to-Watergate extended catastrophe a lot LESS charitable society than when we went into it.  

    Have we EVER gotten over that era?  We certainly haven't resolved the problem of racism despite making great progress with part of the population; and Vietnam seems to haunt us as much as ever, with conservative Chickenhawk dreams of Iraq exorcising its ghost proving a cruel illusion.  The broader problem of our democracy being corrupted by our imperialism seems as chronic and irresolvable  as ever, highlighted today by the first black President's claiming the right to kill just about anybody outside our borders with no due process, including American citizens.  Is there any doubt that MLK would've found bitter irony in that particular combination of racial progress and atavistic barbarity?

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