Monday, November 5, 2007

Remember, Remember, the 5th of November

The film version of V for Vendetta was originally scheduled for release on the weekend of November 5, 2005, the 400th anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot, which would tie in with V's use of a Guy Fawkes mask. One aspect of the film that has become dear to the hearts of self-described libertarians is V's line, "The people shouldn't be afraid of their government. The government should be afraid of the people."

This is nonsense. Authoritarian governments are afraid of their people; that's why they try to turn their countries into huge prisons. The more frightened the government is of the people, the harsher its rule becomes. In the end, neither people nor government should be afraid of the other, because the people ultimately make up the government (which is a truth that libertarians are always at great pains to deny).

1 comment:

Jen Clark said...

Is the situation in Pakistan not the perfect example of your point? Musharraf was about to lose power by way of the Supreme Court, and his fear lead him to take over the country and arrest thousands of people.

I hope Bush doesn't follow in his footsteps. Unfortunately, the stage is set for him to do just that. (Could that explain Bush's refusal to threaten Musharraf with any real consequences for his actions, other than harsh words?)