September 2nd, 2005


Fallacy of a Fallacy

I recently stumbled across Interdictor, a livejournal of some network guy who's in flooded New Orleans attempting to salvage the IT setup. He has amusing commentary regarding Jesse Jackson's recent comments on the looters. Not long after the city was evacuated and the police withdrew, gangs of people began to wander the streets, robbing stores. According to Interdictor, these groups are also shooting at police and rescue workers. At the same time, a number of people continued to go to stores to acquire essentials, not paying for their food because there was noone left to pay. Jackson appears to be willfully ignorant of the first type, claiming that everyone is in group two, and criticising media that covers looting and violence. This is not surprising behaviour for either the looters or for Jackson..

Jesse Jackson has long struck me as someone with very little intellectual integrity. He has a lot of good press because he is very vocal at pointing out injustice where it occurs and drawing attention to it. Unfortunately, he is similarly good at inventing injustice where it does not occur or misunderstanding it, and drawing attention to it there too. Jackson tends to overcategorise all struggle as race struggle, just as, unfortunately, many fellow comrades tend to see almost all struggle as class struggle. In politics, he's a strange wildcard -- he can polarise a lot of people on a given issue, and make a big fuss, but throwing him a bone tends to quiet him relatively quickly.

Anyhow, read the comments on that entry -- they're a very lively, interesting dialogue.