“Why brought he us from bondage,/ Our loved Egyptian night?”

Well, because every silver lining must have its cloud, or every rose its thorn, or every great band its “Mr. Moonlight“, The Guardian‘s Neil Clark pegs the stupid meter by looking at the dark side of Vaclav Havel’s Velvet Revolution:

No one questions that Havel, who went to prison twice, was a brave man who had the courage to stand up for his views. Yet the question which needs to be asked is whether his political campaigning made his country, and the world, a better place.

Havel’s anti-communist critique contained little if any acknowledgement of the positive achievements of the regimes of eastern Europe in the fields of employment, welfare provision, education and women’s rights. Or the fact that communism, for all its faults, was still a system which put the economic needs of the majority first.

Ah, yes, and all it cost Eastern Europe was freedom of thought and conscience, the ability to trust and care about one’s neighbors and family members, or the right to be anything but a chattel of the state. While you’re at it, Mr. Clark, did the trains run on time? In the words of those noted philosophers, Casale and Mothersbaugh, “Freedom of choice is what you’ve got;/ Freedom from choice is what you want.”

“Horrible, horrible freedom”, indeed.

 

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About profmondo

Dad, husband, mostly free individual, medievalist, writer, and drummer. "Gladly wolde he lerne and gladly teche."
This entry was posted in Culture, Music, Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to “Why brought he us from bondage,/ Our loved Egyptian night?”

  1. J. Otto Pohl says:

    Please no Devo quotations.

  2. nightfly says:

    Careful! They’re ruffled!

    Well, I for one welcome our new Ant Overlords… which is probably exactly what Neil Clark hopes to hear.

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