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coberst
2005-Dec-08, 03:31 PM
Intellectual Character
The Socratic questioning technique exposes each participant to probing questions forcing the student to become conscious of the thinking structure behind any assertion of opinion. Basic issues are introduced and discussed in a controlled forum and through questioning the assumptions, prejudices, points of view and other inherent thought structures are exposed. This helps all members of the dialogue to develop an understanding of their own modes of intellection. Another important feature that becomes exposed is that there may be many points of view to every question, points of view that may not even have been anticipated by other members of the dialogue group before exposure.

In such a dialogue group each participant is forced to listen carefully and constantly develop the habits of intellectual focus and critical thinking. The student becomes conscious of the assumptions and prejudices that permeate everyone’s thinking.

The standard teacher/pupil teaching technique accentuates the importance of acquiring knowledge. The Socratic technique accentuates the importance of understanding and critical thinking. Being knowledgeable of a matter and understanding a matter are very different categories of comprehension.

I thought I might compare and contrast the professional journalist with the professional military officer in an attempt to focus upon the difference and importance of these two intellectual traits of comprehension.

What might be the ideal character traits of these two professions? It seems that the military officer should be smart, well trained, obedient and brave. The journalist should be smart, well trained, critical and honest. The journalist must have well-developed intellectual character traits and be skillful in critical thinking. The military officer should be trained to act somewhat like an automaton in critical circumstances.

The officer’s behavior in each conceivable circumstance should follow precisely a well-established code of action. The officer is trained to follow well-established algorithms in every circumstance. Even those instances wherein the officer is authorized to deviate from standard procedure are clearly defined algorithms. The officer deviates from established behavior only when absolutely necessary and that ad hoc behavior should follow along prescribed avenues. The officer obeys all commands without critical analysis except in very unusual circumstances. Bravery and obedience are the two most desired character traits of a military officer.

The role of the journalist in wartime has evolved dramatically in the last 50 years. During WWII the journalist acted as cheerleader and propagandist. During the Vietnam War the journalist often played the role of critical analyst. While one can see some positive reasons for the cheerleader and propagandist I will assume that overall this is not a proper role for the journalist in a democracy. The ideal journalist must always be a critical analyst and communicate honestly to the reader the results of her investigation.

Since most people unconsciously seek opinion fortification rather than truth they become very agitated when they find news which does not fortify their opinion. Thus, most people have low opinions of journalists. Nevertheless, it is no doubt the ideal journalist who presents the facts fairly, accurately and in a balanced manner. The ability ‘to connect the dots’ in each situation is of primary importance for the ideal journalist. Knowledge is important but understanding and critical thinking is more important.

We certainly want our military officers educated more in the didactic mode than in the Socratic mode whereas we would find that journalist educated in the Socratic mode would be the better journalist. The journalist must be able to recognize the prejudices of others as well as recognizing his/her own biases.

What might one say as regarding the contrasting importance of understanding and knowledge for a teacher, engineer, accountant, nurse, factory worker or secretary? With consideration we probably will find that knowledge is more important than understanding when thinking of the individual as a worker. The credentials that appear on most resumes are those testifying to a degree of knowledge by the job applicant.

We do not even have a metric for understanding.

Argos
2005-Dec-08, 04:04 PM
I beg your pardon, but I think we need less Socratic thinking, which I deem as the origin of all educational problems. The excessive reliance on abstraction and rejection of empirical evidence makes the (pre-scientific) socratic thinking intolerable.

mugaliens
2005-Dec-08, 05:23 PM
I thought I might compare and contrast the professional journalist with the professional military officer in an attempt to focus upon the difference and importance of these two intellectual traits of comprehension.

What might be the ideal character traits of these two professions? It seems that the military officer should be smart, well trained, obedient and brave. The journalist should be smart, well trained, critical and honest. The journalist must have well-developed intellectual character traits and be skillful in critical thinking. The military officer should be trained to act somewhat like an automaton in critical circumstances.

Military officers are not automatons. They're the ones in charge and must have the same skills as journalists.

Back that up.

The profession of arms is a long one. Those who fail are dead. There are certain skills a military officer must have to ensure both the success of the mission (victory) and the longevity of his men. the include being "smart, well trained, critical, and honest." They also include posessing "well-developed character traits and be skillful in critical thinking."

They don't include being an automaton.

In contrast, journalists work for the companies. If the company doesn't like their work, they're fired. Thus, they must both posess similar skills as that of an officer, but be willing to be automatons of their company.

The difference is that officers are responsible for much more than getting the story.

They're responsible for both ensuring mission completion as well as the lives of those entrusted to their care.

These two goals are often at odds with one another. The best officers accomplish both. The best journalists only have to worry about ensuring mission completion.

coberst
2005-Dec-08, 06:45 PM
Mug..

The most important characteristic for a military officer is that s/he be brave and obedient. The most important characteristic of a journalist is that s/he be fair and cogent.

Gullible Jones
2005-Dec-09, 03:07 AM
Coberst, what the heck are you ranting about? You don't seem to be saying anything useful, or for that matter anything in particular.

ASEI
2005-Dec-09, 03:12 AM
(comment deleted: can't back it up off the top of my head.)

EvilBob
2005-Dec-09, 03:48 AM
Coberst, what the heck are you ranting about? You don't seem to be saying anything useful, or for that matter anything in particular.
I think this comment bears repeating.

ASEI
2005-Dec-09, 04:14 AM
He's probably trying to set up a hypothetical conflict of interest that places journalists and military officers on opposite sides, and then proceed to show the journalists mission as somehow nobler, and justify the former fighting against the latter's cause.

Maksutov
2005-Dec-09, 06:56 AM
Folks, this is the same thing he did on the BABB, as well as numerous other BBs, where essentially the exact same posts would show up. One definition of spamming is posting the same post on multiple BBs, and doing this over and over one post at a time.

The posts all take the form of a hypothetical situation, usually an artificial, contrived conflict, followed by the poster analyzing the "conflict" ad infinitum. Somewhere in the "analysis" there is usually a criticism of the current educational system.

Check out this link (http://www.criticalthinking.org/forum/index.php?PHPSESSID=bf69c36a48f7b14e2d5bb36f7f9ba9 12&action=profile;u=80;sa=showPosts) and see if some of the posts look rather familiar. As well as here. (http://forum.physorg.com/index.php?showtopic=3883&st=0) And here. (http://www.strike-the-root.com/cgi-local/yabb/YaBB.pl?board=;action=usersrecentposts;username=co berst)
And many other BBs too numerous to list.

Finally, most of the content of his posts is the result of copies and pastes from his web page. (http://www.septemberscholar.com/essays/septemberscholar.html)

Meanwhile, please don't wake me until this is over.

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/muede/f055.gif

mugaliens
2005-Dec-09, 07:56 PM
Mug..

The most important characteristic for a military officer is that s/he be brave and obedient. The most important characteristic of a journalist is that s/he be fair and cogent.

There's truth in what you say, but there's some misconceptions, too. Brave obedient officers die every day. Self-critiquing. Fair and cogent journalists don't sell papers. The New York Post's recent makeover is prime evidence.

My father was an officer. On routine matters he was fair and obedient. On critical matters he always did what he thought whas right. He outlived and or was promoted to higher ranks than most of his former bosses.

I do the same at work. I have a boss, and am the boss of others. I don't expect blind obedience, but if a final decision needs to be made, I make it. But I also expect people to speak up when something's wrong, and tell me why. My boss has said he expects the same from me.

My father says things were the same during his three decades of service.

But that's only one point of view. Perhaps in other services things ar different.

SolusLupus
2005-Dec-09, 08:05 PM
I notice that people haven't commented on the number of journalists that are NOT...


...smart, well trained, critical and honest.

How many journalists have not been critical, and have not been honest? Or, perhaps I should say, how many allow their personal bias to influence the way they report? Including not interviewing people that would put forth evidence or a viewpoint that contradicts theirs?

I noticed once on Fox News, during the whole Terry Schiavo case, Fox news interviewed a lot of people that believed that Terry Schiavo should have been forced to live -- celebrities, etc. Then on the opposite side, the "opposing viewpoint"... they chose a group of communists. Yes, that's right; communists. Actual communists. Then they diverted the conversation to talking about how communism would take over the world... IMO, it seemed like they did that to make that one viewpoint seem "on the fringe". Is that truly 100% accurate reporting?

mugaliens
2005-Dec-09, 09:08 PM
Well, there's one on CNN's website that's not very smart. She talks about far more deadly IEDs, then goes on to spill the beans as to how they're made far more deadly.

Thanks.

I wonder if she's one of those people who post recipes for how to make homemade bombs from household chemicals? Did she think she'd a pulitzer by giving even more terrorists the ability to maim and kill both military and civilians?

I think most reporters have a decent amount of integrity. But all too often, even mainstream ones are going after just another buck.

tlbs101
2005-Dec-09, 09:31 PM
Ultimately, the military officer is protecting the journalist from destruction at the hand of the enemy. If the journalist realized this he might be more likely to play the role of cheerleader.

SolusLupus
2005-Dec-09, 09:39 PM
Personally, I have a mixed view about the military. There are bad military officers, there are good military officers. There are bad soldiers, there are good soldiers.

Same with journalists. There are bad journalists, there are good journalists.

The military should be treated with both respect, but also caution; however, a lot of people take it to extremes.

paulie jay
2005-Dec-10, 12:01 AM
]
I thought I might compare and contrast the professional journalist with the professional military officer in an attempt to focus upon the difference and importance of these two intellectual traits of comprehension.

What might be the ideal character traits of these two professions? It seems that the military officer should be smart, well trained, obedient and brave. The journalist should be smart, well trained, critical and honest. The journalist must have well-developed intellectual character traits and be skillful in critical thinking. The military officer should be trained to act somewhat like an automaton in critical circumstances.

You said exactly the same thing (to the word) before you were banned from the Bad Astronomy Bulletin board. Nothing new here.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 07:07 AM
. Bravery and obedience are the two most desired character traits of a military officer.

I beg to differ on this. The most valued trait an officer can have is the ability to think under pressure, evaluating the situation and coming up with a plan.

archman
2005-Dec-10, 08:05 AM
I beg to differ on this. The most valued trait an officer can have is the ability to think under pressure, evaluating the situation and coming up with a plan.
Ditto. Some of my friends are officers in various service branches, and they back this up. Some of my other friends are noncoms, and they also support that officers are trained for independent thought, while they (the enlisted) follow more of the "automoton" model. And even that's quite a generalization.

coberst
2005-Dec-10, 03:57 PM
Any military person who does not salute and say Yes Sir will not be in the military for long.

Enzp
2005-Dec-10, 07:35 PM
And any military person who marches off a cliff because his commanding officer neglected to tell him to stop is a fool and not much of a soldier.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 08:55 PM
Any military person who does not salute and say Yes Sir will not be in the military for long.

It is tactically foolish to salute on the battlefield. It marks out an officer to any sniper who might be watching. Blind obedience used to be required from soldiers, officers always needed to think.

coberst
2005-Dec-10, 09:11 PM
Philip

Yes, they must be able to think but mostly they must know what they can think and when they can think. Normally they are told what to do and when they think they should deviate they must do so by the book. Every thing has an algorythm defining how, when and where.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 09:28 PM
Philip

Yes, they must be able to think but mostly they must know what they can think and when they can think. Normally they are told what to do and when they think they should deviate they must do so by the book. Every thing has an algorythm defining how, when and where.

Not in my experience. Would you like to cite your sources?

Training is done to a method, because a certain amount of standardisation is required to enable you to work with neighbouring forces. Surprising the enemy is highly prized in the military, and working, as you seem to believe, to an algorithm is hardly surprising. I will admit there have been in the recent past armies (British pre 1940, Soviet) who have insisted on sticking to theorems as dogma rather than guidelines. They generally lost.

ASEI
2005-Dec-10, 10:32 PM
Philip

Yes, they must be able to think but mostly they must know what they can think and when they can think. Normally they are told what to do and when they think they should deviate they must do so by the book. Every thing has an algorythm defining how, when and where.

There's a lot of stuff you need to know to be able to survive on a battlefield, and to function effectively in the military. The training that seems so rigid and mechanical to you is designed to get that information in your head as fast as possible, and make you effective at performing accordingly.

Furthermore, military doctrine is not some rigid theology, like you seem to believe. It is a guideline on how certain types of forces can be used most effectively. Look at the Army Air Corps during WWII, for an example of doctrine that changed rapidly as we figured out what didn't work and adjusted. (Night bombing at high altitude to evade AA guns -> bombs almost never hit target; Unescorted bombing to strike at heart of Germany -> bombers got chewed up by enemy fighters - needed long range fighters; ect) Eventually we started getting the hang of using air power.

Suppose you were plunked down in a napoleonic battlefield and put in charge of a bunch of calvary - how would you use them?
Civilian: Umm . . . ah . . . er? Charge the infantry?
Inexperienced Officer: The prevailing doctrine says the following...
Experienced Officer: My experience says the following...and I'll teach better doctrine when I get back home.

How would you assault modern enemies entrenched in a city with attack helicopters? With tanks? What if you only had air assault infantry? What if they have anti-aircraft weapons? If you've never done any of this before, what do you turn to? The doctrine. It makes perfect sense, or our military wouldn't be doing it.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 10:42 PM
Look at the Army Air Corps during WWII, for an example of doctrine that changed rapidly as we figured out what didn't work and adjusted. (Night bombing at high altitude to evade AA guns -> bombs almost never hit target;

Worked for the RAF.... ;)

coberst
2005-Dec-10, 10:59 PM
Asei

I think that the military functions somewhat like a science that is under paradigm control. Boundaries are established in both instances. But because in a military vast coordination is required and split second timing is important no talk back can be permitted. I am not an officer and never have been but I think that the military operates in a well-formulated step by step controlled environment. And any deviation must also be done by the book.

Moose
2005-Dec-10, 11:16 PM
Suppose you were plunked down in a napoleonic battlefield and put in charge of a bunch of calvary - how would you use them?
Civilian: Umm . . . ah . . . er? Charge the infantry?
Inexperienced Officer: The prevailing doctrine says the following...
Experienced Officer: My experience says the following...and I'll teach better doctrine when I get back home.

This civilian: Flank the enemy infantry (from both sides if the numbers allow it)... shortly after they've been engaged and pinned down by friendly infantry, all the while keeping a cavalry reserve clear to respond to any opportunities, such as vulnerable artillary or undefended general staff.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 11:19 PM
This civilian: Flank the enemy infantry (from both sides if the numbers allow it)... shortly after they've been engaged and pinned down by friendly infantry, all the while keeping a cavalry reserve clear to respond to any opportunities, such as vulnerable artillary or undefended general staff.

Going after General Staff in Napoleonic times? Dash unsporting of you, you cad! It just isn't the done thing....

;)

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 11:23 PM
Oh yeah, Moose - I wouldn't recommend attacking a block of Napoleonic infantry with cavalry until they had already broken, even from both flanks simultaneously. A better idea would be shell them with artillery until they started to retreat, then charge with cavalry. Cavalry are devastating against troops in retreat, but essentially useless against a formed up block.

Moose
2005-Dec-10, 11:39 PM
Going after General Staff in Napoleonic times? Dash unsporting of you, you cad! It just isn't the done thing....

;)

All things are forgiven the victor. And in any case, the winner writes the history books. :D


Oh yeah, Moose - I wouldn't recommend attacking a block of Napoleonic infantry with cavalry until they had already broken, even from both flanks simultaneously. A better idea would be shell them with artillery until they started to retreat, then charge with cavalry. Cavalry are devastating against troops in retreat, but essentially useless against a formed up block.

The idea is to not charge until the enemy infantry was already well engaged against the opposing infantry, to reduce the volley fire on approach. The cavalry also wouldn't be dashing about with muskets of their own, but rather nice big sabers like the old days. Bayonettes are pretty good in close quarters against other infantry, but not so good when you're being trampled under by a quarter ton of horseflesh.

And you didn't say I had my own artillery. ;) That changes everything.

Philip A
2005-Dec-10, 11:51 PM
The idea is to not charge until the enemy infantry was already well engaged against the opposing infantry, to reduce the volley fire on approach. The cavalry also wouldn't be dashing about with muskets of their own, but rather nice big sabers like the old days. Bayonettes are pretty good in close quarters against other infantry, but not so good when you're being trampled under by a quarter ton of horseflesh.

And you didn't say I had my own artillery. ;) That changes everything.

Horses won't get close enough to a block of infantry. 3-4 ranks of infantry with bayonets fixed put up a hedge of spearpoints, and the horse won't jump in if it can't see where it is landing. It was Marshal Ney's problem at Waterloo, almost certainly cost Napoleon the battle.

Artillery - combined arms! Never go to battle without some big guns..... ;)

Moose
2005-Dec-11, 12:00 AM
Horses won't get close enough to a block of infantry. 3-4 ranks of infantry with bayonets fixed put up a hedge of spearpoints, and the horse won't jump in if it can't see where it is landing. It was Marshal Ney's problem at Waterloo, almost certainly cost Napoleon the battle.

*grin* You also didn't say anything about fortifications.

Actually, I'm going to change my answer. I'm going to detatch half the cavalry to act as scouts, and the other half to round up and execute the old scouts who are obviously incompetent and/or in the employ of the enemy.

... Neglecting to mention fortifications and artillery. Sheesh.

Philip A
2005-Dec-11, 12:22 AM
*grin* You also didn't say anything about fortifications.

Actually, I'm going to change my answer. I'm going to detatch half the cavalry to act as scouts, and the other half to round up and execute the old scouts who are obviously incompetent and/or in the employ of the enemy.

... Neglecting to mention fortifications and artillery. Sheesh.


Never mentioned fortifications - ever seen paintings of infantry in squares? Invulnerable to cavalry, VERY vulnerable to artillery (difficult to maneouvre coherently). But in our example you can't use your artillery due to the proximity of your own infantry... fresh horsemeat for the enemy tonight!

But yeah, execute the scouts. Or more likely, the officer who listened to the scouts report.

ASEI
2005-Dec-11, 12:25 AM
Worked for the RAF....
Guess I need to read that chapter again.

And it looks like I put my foot in a nest of history buffs or something with the napoleonic warfare reference. :-P

Moose
2005-Dec-11, 12:27 AM
But yeah, execute the scouts. Or more likely, the officer who listened to the scouts report.

Heh. Ouch. :sad:

I always knew I'd be first against the wall when the revolution came.

Moose
2005-Dec-11, 12:31 AM
Never mentioned fortifications - ever seen paintings of infantry in squares? Invulnerable to cavalry, VERY vulnerable to artillery (difficult to maneouvre coherently). But in our example you can't use your artillery due to the proximity of your own infantry... fresh horsemeat for the enemy tonight!

Actually, and I can't emphasize it enough, the cavalry isn't going in first or alone. The infantry, by then, is at close pistol shot and the artillary on both sides have already done their thing.

In any case, "stand and deliver" is not my preferred form of warfare. *chuckle*

Philip A
2005-Dec-11, 12:38 AM
Actually, and I can't emphasize it enough, the cavalry isn't going in first or alone. The infantry, by then, is at close pistol shot and the artillary on both sides have already done their thing.

I can't stress enough either - cavalry won't attack formed infantry. If your infantry have already broken their formation, then send your cavalry en masse straight in. Good psychological effect from a big block of horsemen thundering at you as you run. Well, bad effects if you're the one running!

Moose
2005-Dec-11, 12:51 AM
I can't stress enough either - cavalry won't attack formed infantry.

Mmm, that doesn't explain the effectiveness of heavy cavalry and/or lancers in earlier ages. The only effective solution to heavy cavalry was a tight forest of pikes and/or field fortifications (with archers or thrown pila). Exposed infantry, even massed infantry, inevitably suffered greatly to cavalry charges.

I get the impression there are unstated differences in training and/or morale in your hypothetical situation.

In any case, without a relatively complete picture of terrain and the composition and condition of either armies, the friendlies have no chance of winning, and Sun Tzu would call that general an unmitigated fool.

Philip A
2005-Dec-11, 01:27 AM
Mmm, that doesn't explain the effectiveness of heavy cavalry and/or lancers in earlier ages. The only effective solution to heavy cavalry was a tight forest of pikes and/or field fortifications (with archers or thrown pila). Exposed infantry, even massed infantry, inevitably suffered greatly to cavalry charges.

The important word is 'formed'. The Legions (in the same way as a phalanx or Saxon shieldwall) stood shoulder to shoulder, many ranks deep. A horse will not charge into such a formation, they can't be trained enough to overcome their instinctive need to see where they will land. Historically, Lancers were developed as they were more effective than sword-armed cavalry because of the reach of their weapons, so they could ride up and stab from outside the range of infantry spears. By the 19th century this advantage had been lost due to infantry all having effective firearms, so staying outside bayonet range gave no safety.

Against infantry in open or broken order cavalry were lethal.


I get the impression there are unstated differences in training and/or morale in your hypothetical situation.

Agreed. Poorly drilled or poorly led troops frequently broke at the appearance of enemy elite cavalry thundering towards them, thereby getting massacred. If they didn't break, however, they normally fought off the assault.

mugaliens
2005-Dec-11, 10:15 PM
I like asymmetric warfare - hit their weaknesses with your strengths. Snipe some of the Generals and key leaders, shell, retreat, defend en masse, charge, repeat.

Philip A
2005-Dec-11, 11:39 PM
I like asymmetric warfare - hit their weaknesses with your strengths. Snipe some of the Generals and key leaders, shell, retreat, defend en masse, charge, repeat.

I've always been in favour of targeted assassinations of enemy leaders. Why kill only the people who are ordered to do something when you can kill those responsible for the orders?

SolusLupus
2005-Dec-11, 11:42 PM
I've always been in favour of targeted assassinations of enemy leaders. Why kill only the people who are ordered to do something when you can kill those responsible for the orders?

Few reasons.

Heirarchy of command. Kill the person that's leading them, then another person takes over; kill him, another person takes over. Never-ending cycle, and as long as the nation has a strong military, all it means is that you have weaker leadership (since those that get into power are either ignorant or paranoid). Doesn't necessarily weaken the generals, though.

Ease of assassination. Assassinating someone isn't really easy. You have to have means, methods, and personnel to do it.

It's also not just a matter of "honor", but also "diplomacy". What nation wants to deal with a nation that's fond of assassination and subterfuge as opposed to open and honest conflict?

mugaliens
2005-Dec-11, 11:55 PM
I've always been in favour of targeted assassinations of enemy leaders. Why kill only the people who are ordered to do something when you can kill those responsible for the orders?

Lonewulf, I like your thinking.

Also, the law of reciprocity. We use assasination as a tool then it legitimizes it and others will use it against us.

As for military tools, it's difficult, but not impossible, and fairly cost-effective, but only if it's legitimized.

If not legitimate, then it gives us right to strike back.

Moose
2005-Dec-12, 12:00 AM
Also, the law of reciprocity. We use assasination as a tool then it legitimizes it and others will use it against us.

Is that necessarily a bad thing? Might mean that we get a higher quality of dedication in our leaders all around.

Philip A
2005-Dec-12, 12:41 AM
Few reasons.

Heirarchy of command. Kill the person that's leading them, then another person takes over; kill him, another person takes over. Never-ending cycle, and as long as the nation has a strong military, all it means is that you have weaker leadership (since those that get into power are either ignorant or paranoid). Doesn't necessarily weaken the generals, though.

Ease of assassination. Assassinating someone isn't really easy. You have to have means, methods, and personnel to do it.

It's also not just a matter of "honor", but also "diplomacy". What nation wants to deal with a nation that's fond of assassination and subterfuge as opposed to open and honest conflict?


Heirarchy: read up on the Soviet Army purges of the 30's, then look at what happened in the first few months of the Eastern Front. Wiping out their own command staff ensured that the most able generals were unable to defend their land. The Germans stopped at Moscow. It's like film sequels - diminishing returns. I was thinking more of politicians anyway.

Ease: The difficulty doesn't lie in doing the deed, just agreeing to do it.

Honour / Diplomacy: If it is the stated policy of your nation to deal with wars by removing the command structure of your enemy, then it is not subterfuge.

Now before I come across as a bloodthirsty lunatic, I will state that I am NOT in favour of general assassinations. But as a reason for people to think twice before ordering their army into action.... Would some of the past 50 years adventures have happened if those putting people in harms way were made to face the consequences personally?

mugaliens
2005-Dec-12, 01:36 AM
Is that necessarily a bad thing? Might mean that we get a higher quality of dedication in our leaders all around.

Dedication? I think it might be anti-public paranoia!

Moose
2005-Dec-12, 03:23 AM
Perhaps, but consider this: could you, straight off the top of your head, name the national leader of, say, Sweden? (If not by name, at least by title.)

Seems to me this leader has been fairly quiet on the "causes trouble internationally" scale. Would any national leader, anywhere, have any real motive whatsoever in having this person rubbed out?

Another example, the recent hissyfight between Canada and Denmark over flying flags on that unpopulated island in the middle of nowhere. I can't see the Danish or Canadian populations giving a flying lick over actually fighting over it.

But, if it came down to it, that either leader could (legitimately) order the assassination of the other if the other got too frisky over threatening force, without bringing both nations to a full-scale conflict, it stands to reason they would have sat down and hammered out a mutually-acceptable compromise long before certain little tempers got too hot.

There aren't many national leaders who would intentionally put their own butts on the line once they've sat on the big chair.

mugaliens
2005-Dec-12, 03:32 AM
Well, I know it's a kingdom, so, probably "your royal highness."

Now let me go look it up

It's King Carl XVI Gustaf, but they call him the Chief of State.

But I do get your points, Moose. It would make leaders think twice before committing themselves and others to hostilities.