Democracy vs. Militarism (Scientific Thinking vs. Scapegoating)


Democratic thinking is reason-consequence oriented, it tries to understand why things happen the way they do, what are their causes, context, dynamism and future, from what combinations they came and into what new combinations are they prone to enter and why. Militarism, on the other hand, is scapegoatingly oriented. For militarism everything bad happens because of some evil people who do evil things to harm us. Therefore, the solution will always be the elimination of these people who are responsible for the very existence of the problems in the world. Militarism’s thinking stops before a human figure, like thinking of policemen and shooting range enthusiasts. It never goes to the  causes of human behavior. Militarism’s thinking is fixated on human beings and is limited by this fixation – it’s unable to go to abstractions.


Militarism corresponds to totalitarianism (the latter is the very ideological womb of scapegoating intentionality). Totalitarian systems are barefootedly and nakedfistedly scapegoating. The Soviet Russia, for example, was established and built on the images of enemies – so-called carriers of the evil. Several generations were brainwashed to hate and to be ready to die while killing. And they did, physically, spiritually and/or intellectually. They learned that the figures of the enemy – secret agents of imperialism, its secret sympathizers, decadents, “individualists”, sexual perverts and life style deviants, mark the end of the world, that only through killing it is possible to enlarge the world.


The transformation of (democratic) America into (militarist) Bushmerica had this dumbing effect on the population. The more scapegoatingly oriented people are – the more they perceive the world in terms of ready-made villains, the less they think. The less they think – the more gullible they become and then they either 1) hate more and become more machoistically belligerent (conservatives), or 2) become more indifferent and hooked on mass-cultural consumerist pleasures (philistines), or 3) become more frightened and entrenched into their professions and hobbies (liberally sensitive).       


Militarism hurts every group of the population – mentally, emotionally, spiritually. But it provides a very strong – barely resistible compensations of a psychological and a material sort. The psychological compensations are universal – the right to hate and to kill the enemies and the opportunity to consume more and to feel morally better than everybody else. The pleasures of such naive megalomania and scapegoating are, in fact, the most ancient and dense pleasures available to human beings (human history itself branded these pleasures). The material compensations of militarism are distributed, first of all, to moneymakers of military and those that have ties to military, corporations, and to those who are employed by them. 


At the end what really suffers from militarism is democratic sensibility of the population, the humanistic sciences, and the very future of humankind. Without democratic aspirations and humanistically-scientific thinking there is only one way – more wars, more crimes, more strife and blindness, and more senseless suffering.


Scapegoating always plays a big role in all wars. But in Iraq war this orientation on righteous murderous hate looking for victims, is a central and magnified feature. Scapegoating occupies the place of absent reason for Iraq invasion. Hate in this situation produces scapegoats like figures in violent videogame, and gives them real names. It is like the Soviet “cold war” with “American imperialism”.