Saturday, August 23, 2008

A parable told by Orson Welles


andrew said...

It took a long time for the story to finally get it right.

There is no land with a magical freedom river, and I dislike any fairytail which speaks of 'hey, freedom over here!'

The magical river of freedom we have here in the USA wasn't just sitting here waiting for Columbus to bump into it.

It was paid for in sweat and tears. Hundreds of thousands have died for it. It's like those T shirts you see around military bases "FUCK THE GOVERNMENT" then in small print it says 'if you can read this, thank a teacher' followed by 'if you can say this, thank a marine'

We paid a horrible price to have the freedoms we do, and it wasn't just soldiers. It was civil rights activists. It was Unions. It was farmers and teachers and lawyers and figherfighters and policemen and social workers and builders and fair businessmen.

It isn't that the river needs to be cleaned up. It is that the river needs to be constantly maintained. Freedom isn't free. To blindly ignore the great sacrifices and paint the alegocial freedoms we currently have as something of no cost that just exists is shameful.

I think it is this attitude that allows the river to be polluted in the first place, the concept that you just get freedom for doing nothing.

I also think they get the kids exactly backwards. It seems kids today are more likely than ever to put aside freedom for security. Don't believe me? Ask a 7th grader if it should be legal to fly the Nazi flag, or publish cartoons that are insulting to muslims, or whatever your sacred cow happens to be.

andrew said...

"the people aren't ready for the river of freedom...perhaps, later"

That is the one thing I didn't like about the new batman movie, the concept that the truth had to be withheld from the people 'for their own good'

That is B.S.

I want to slap batman with a freedom of information act

Gus said...

Well, it is a parable.

w1ndst0rm said...

Can someone explain why I should care about a parable about France?

andrew said...

Oh, right. I am sure that he wanted this parable to be heard but never actually discussed.

I am also sticking with my story of batman's decision that the common people must be sheltered from the truth about their hero and his fall is a betrayal.

Gus said...

Batman is a bit of a fascism. He's a vigilante after all.

And the point of parables is that they don't have to have 1 to 1 correlations to everything in reality. They can focus on one issue or idea. So this parable, rather than focusing on earning freedom focuses on squandering freedom. Because, really, if you tell a story that hits every not it's no longer a parable, it's non-fiction.

andrew said...

I am still confident the parable's writer would rather it garner ANY discussion of freedom, even pointing out how the parable is different, than garner no discussion on freedom

anyways, onto batman

"Fascism is an authoritarian nationalist political ideology and mass movement that is concerned with notions of cultural decline or decadence, and which seeks to achieve a millenarian national rebirth by exalting the nation or race, as well as promoting cults of unity, strength and purity"

I can see the batman tail as a man attempting to stop cultural decline, namely a city overrun by crime, but I don't think the facsit label applies, as it is lacking in every other area (well, maybe a cult of strength and purity)

I don't recall ever before batman's vigilantism or anyone's vigilantism ncessesitating the hiding of important truths about the reality of the situation from people 'for their own good'. That goes about 7 steps beyond hiding your own identity

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