“The worse it gets, the better it is.”
– Vladamir I Lenin.
Imagine you possess a burning will to power. This intense desire to take over and run the nation you live in stems from a messianic complex mated with egocentric power lust to form the bastard offspring of revolutionary zeal. Yet a problem stands between you and your desire to inflict “30.06 enlightenment” on the infidels and the ignorant. The people who know how to run things and that control the machineries of social concord believe you to be about 5 or 6 beers short of a case.
Such was the predicament of Vladamir I Lenin in early 20th Century Russia. The man was ready to crawl over broken glass in order to fumigate the countryside with “progress” and “justice.” In order to do so, he knowingly and deliberately immiserated the people by dismantling the social institutions of his day. He was also considered such a nut-job that he was sent to Russia in a sealed boxcar by Kaiser Wilhelm as a deliberate hostility against the Russian Czars. Even prior to the October Revolution, sending Lenin and his ideas to a foreign country was considered the equivalent of loading a trebuchet with bubonic plague corpses and shooting it into the enemy’s well.
In a chaotic world the least worthy and most iniquitous continue to thrive off of chaos and disorder. Such is the scenario in Modern Egypt as it slides towards an economic abyss and mortal social chaos reminiscent of Somalia. Egypt has become a net importer of food, has lost the bulk of its tourism (who would have thought Lara Logan’s adventure in Tahir Square would vaporize hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Egyptian wealth), has experienced massive capital flight and is under a care-taker military dictatorship that is due to expire. This equals bankruptcy in the very near term.
The Muslim Brotherhood, soon to be heir apparent to the mess that is Egypt, is totally cognizant of the current situation. They are cool with it – as long as it happens now and is someone else’s problem. It seems that their study of modern Leftism as taught them the power of “inheriting somebody else’s mess”, and “never letting a crisis go to waste.” Vladamir Lenin was more to the point. He described this scenario as “The worse it gets, the better it is.”
Their cavalier disregard for the fortunes of Egypt under anyone’s stewardship other than their own was on leafy green display when Khairat al-Shatar described his opposition to an IMF loan that Egypt needs if it enjoys continued membership in post-agrarian society.
“We told them (the government), you have two choices. Either postpone this issue of borrowing and come up with any other way of dealing with it without our approval, or speed up the formation of a government,” Khairat al-Shater said in an interview.
Meanwhile, the Street-Level Reality resulting from the implosion of Egypt’s economy favors the Muslim Brotherhood. They have the foot soldiers on the ground and are using them to take over society as they “resolve” the problems caused by scarcity. Members of the Brotherhood already working in the transitional government are wielding power in a manner reminiscent of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela.
The Ministry of Solidarity and Social Justice began forming “revolutionary committees” to mete out street justice to bakeries, propane dealers and street vendors who “charge more than the price prescribed by law”, the Federation of Egyptian Radio and Television reported on May 3, 2011. According to the ministry, “Thugs are in control of bread and butane prices” and “people’s committees” are required to stop them.
Another intelligent and talented Leftist perhaps informs the execution of The Muslim Brotherhood’s scheme to fulfill their inexorable will to power. American detective story author Dashiell Hammett drew up a perfect scale model for how to blow-up the typical kleptocratic 2nd world government in his masterpiece of noir fiction Red Harvest.
Hammet’s protagonist is a private investigator known only as The Continental Op who goes to investigate a murder in a city names Poisonville. He precipitates crisis after crisis and pits the different arms of a corrupt society against one another until all of them are dead and nobody except the one or two people that The Continental Op considers “moral” enough to wield power are left standing. If this sounds familiar to what is happening in Egypt and perhaps in Libya too after the Glorious Arab Spring left the headlines, welcome to Dashiell Hammett’s desert paradise. The Arab Spring is now giving way to a Red Harvest.
But pay no mind to the psychopathic religious fanatics behind the curtain. Our Commander-In-Chief checked the box. Are you aware that he got Bin Ladin? The War On Terror is over!* All of which explains why the Muslim Brotherhood has it’s thugs on the streets of Cairo. The terrorists have overwhelmingly won in both Egypt and Libya. Gutsy call, Barack. Gutsy call.
* – If I tell that to a TSA Agent during a pat-down do you think he’ll make things a bit rougher during the screening?