Monday, February 27, 2006

Stuck on Ignorant???

Critics of the Bush Administration's vetting of the Dubai Ports deal are "ignorant?" "xenophobic?" "racist?" Not exactly. Ignorant? Yes, many of us are, indeed, ignorant regarding port security and about Dubai. That, by itself doesn't make us wrong. A person can be ignorant on an issue, and still manage to have the correct opinion. Further, a person doesnt have to be knowledgeable about an issue in order to criticize another person's analysis of the issue. An illustration:

Suppose A says "All X's are Y's"

B (knowing nothing about X's or Y's) asks "How do you know that?"

A responds "It's very simple. All X's are Z's and all Y's are Z's, therefore all X's are Y's."

B doesn't have to know anything at all about X's, Y's or Z's in order to criticize the flaw in A's logic. (If the flaw isn't readily clear to you, substitute "men" for X, "women" for Y and "humans" for Z in the above exchange.) Given different facts, it may very well be that all X's are Y's, but the truth of that proposition is not at all evident from A's argument. From my perspective, the conversation on the Dubai Ports deal is going something like this:
Critics: It's not apparent that the Bush Administration reviewed this ports deal diligently.

White House: What are you talking about? We use the ports of Dubai all the time! They even service our Navy ships! They're a vital ally in the war on terror! You're just a racist!

Critics: All that may be true, but there's a procedure for reviewing these deals, and it's not clear that it was followed.

White House: Stop trying to change the subject, racist-man! Are you an expert on port security all of a sudden? Didn't think so. In fact, you're an ignorant xenophobe who hates Arabs. How are we supposed to win hearts and minds with bigots like you flooding the airwaves? Should there be a different standard for Arabs than for white people? Maybe we shouldn't let the brown people vote! Would that make you happy, Gov'nah Wallace?

Critics: No, I'm definitely not an expert on port security. I think experts on port security have a lot of knowledge to share. I just think the Administration should've talked to them a months ago, rather than a few days ago. I honestly don't know whether this deal affects national security or not. I just don't think the Administration looked at it closely enough the first time around.

White House: There you go again with your red herrings. This issue is not about your personal opinion on how much more bureaucratic red tape would make you sufficiently happy. In case you didn't notice, this issue is about PORT SECURITY. You've already admitted your ignorance on port security. I rest my case.

Critics: *SIGH*...

White House: By the way, dont' forget to VOTE REPUBLICAN in November!


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11:59 AM  

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