Evolving Thoughts

Evolution, culture, philosophy and chocolate! John Wilkins' continuing struggle to come to terms with impermanence... "Humanus sum, nihil humanum a me alienum puto" - Terence

Friday, January 14, 2005

Knowledge, ethics, and the White House

I know these form an oxymoron in a single heading, but I found this item by David Corn at Capital Games to raise some interesting philosophical issues.

Despite failing to find WMDs, the White House refuses to apologise, back down, or, indeed, say anything meaningful about the matter. Given the amount of money spent on the Iraq war, let alone the British and American casualties.

But I don't usually take a political stance on blogs or newsgroups. So what is the philosophical interest here?

I am interested in the way the White House Spokesman, Scott McClelland is able to use language: Saddam Hussein, he says, was "a very unique threat." Despite no WMDs, or indications he was involved in anything untoward against the US or other nations not in his immediate region, Hussein remained a very unique threat.

That must mean that posing no threat at all is very unique. Verily. Which we all know means "truly". And ethics tells us we have to tell the truth, right? Hence the philosophy...