America's picture of itself as inviolable was shredded on 9/11, and for a moment the world's most powerful nation was flayed. Just as its solution to the agony of vulnerability was to attack Afghanistan and Iraq, so the solution to the presence of monsters in our midst is to rid ourselves both of them and any identity with them. They become the receptacle for everything that is bad, and in casting it away we can believe that we are good enough and once again in charge.What on earth does this mean? The subheading to the piece says that "We cast evildoers such as Fritzl as bogeymen to spare ourselves any moral self-examination". I thought that it was because imprisoning and serially raping your daughter in a specially constructed cellar over a 24 year period might just be described as both abnormal and utterly wicked. How foolishly simplistic of me, I am obviously in need of therapy to uncover my moral complicity.
Monday, March 23, 2009
There are times when my critical faculties hit a brick wall of incomprehension. I suppose this is pure Guardian - from Joseph Fritzl to Iraq via Hitler, Fred West, Pol Pot and Attila the Hun, combined with a sense that it is somehow all our fault. I really need help understanding this conclusion: