Congressional oversight is necessary for a pragmatic, flexible approach to threats executive discretion results in knee-jerk policy failure



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Metaphors Fail

Metaphorical discussions of psychic numbing result in nonfalsifiable incoherence


Summers 91—prof at of psychology at Mount Allison University (Craig, Review of Nuclear Madness, http://public.wsu.edu/~brians/ntc/NTC6.pdf)
The only evidence for numbing in the book is Lifton’s observations of victims in Hiroshima, which are then linked to potential victims of the contemporary nuclear threat. Lifton himself recently associated the thought processes in perpetrating Nazi mass killing, and in contemporary “perpetrators” of the nuclear threat, which would have been very relevant to reference here (Lifton and Markusen, 1990). The tendency throughout Nuclear Madness is to increasingly leave the initial evidence and begin describing events as schizophrenic, neurotic or mad. The mental health metaphors in Nuclear Madness are rooted in pre-1950s psychoanalysis. (Even continual reference to “The bomb” rather than “smart missiles,” for example, is outdated.) Chernus states Psychologists may identify nuclear weapons with interpersonal hostility, dominance needs, repressed rage, or magical defenses against insecurity. Freudians will find a mapping of infantile omnipotence desires. Jungians will find archetypal patterns of all sorts. Theologians will consider the bomb a mapped replication of our traditional image of God. But all will attest the existence of social fantasy. (p. 32. Infantile omnipotence desires? All will attest to the existence of social fantasy? Nuclear Madness does, but it is surely a step backwards for any reader attempting to learn something of explanations in contemporary political psychology. In relying on clinical metaphors from over forty years ago, Chernus has tied his philosophy to a clinical approach with little actual evidence, and which is generally no longer accepted. Psychic numbing and mental illness could be used successfully if not treated as just a metaphorical explanation for nuclear irrationality. This is a difference between Lifton’s (1967) actual psychiatric observations and Chernus’s numbing metaphor. But Nuclear Madness dwells on descriptive images and similes, not actually pursuing responses to the nuclear threat using either side of psychology:


(a) the experimental and observational bases, which have been extensively documented, or (b) clinical psychopathology, which would be worth seriously pursuing. One could propose very real psychiatric grounds for the suicidal nature of being a passive bystander or having vested interests in the nuclear arms race (see Charny, 1986). Masking, numbing, rationalizing, or however ignoring the potential for nuclear omnicide is a psychological process that poses a very real threat to human life, and may thus fit the criteria for inclusion as a pathological disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders III (American Psychiatric Association, 1987). People with different political agendas could make completely different conclusions using the material in Nuclear Madness. It is also the case that completely different premises and images could be used to arrive at the same conclusions. A discussion of sexual and pornographic images of the nuclear threat in Rosenbaum (1978) is equally metaphorical. It is descriptive, but not explanatory. Perhaps no real explanation is necessary in Nuclear Madness, though, or even any conclusions on religious thinking or psychological processes. Chernus’s description of “the bomb as “a symbol of neurotic ambivalence” (p. 67; also 56, 61) is almost just an abstract, artistic image. This would be okay if presented this way in the introduction. As it is, though, we are misled from the title on into thinking that this book will provide an understanding of psychological perceptions and responses to the nuclear threat. In conclusion, I appreciate the attempt in Nuclear Madness to deal with a fundamental threat to our continued survival. However, I would have reservations about recommending it, at least as a book on psychology or religion and the nuclear threat. Nuclear Madness attempts to provide a new understanding through a metaphorical nuclear neurosis: “the annihilating trap of narrowness and the empty dark void of formlessness (p. 65). But really, the book just descends into these itself.

AT: Duffield

Duffield is wrong---there’s no global democratic development project, the aff doesn’t cause it, and it doesn’t cause extinction


David Chandler 10, Professor of International Relations, Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster, 2010, “The uncritical critique of ‘liberal peace’,” Review of International Studies, Vol. 36, p. 137-155

Since the late 1990s, commentators have developed critical frameworks of the ‘liberal peace’ to understand the new, more interventionist, approaches to the problems of post-conflict rebuilding and the threat of state failure. 1 In essence, the ‘liberal peace’ is held to go beyond traditional approaches of conflict prevention, or ‘negative peace’; towards the external engineering of post-conflict societies through the export of liberal frameworks of ‘good governance’, democratic elections, human rights, the rule of law and market relations. 2 As Alex Bellamy summarises: ‘The principle aim of peace operations thus becomes not so much about creating spaces for negotiated conflict resolution between states but about actively contributing to the construction of liberal polities, economies and societies.’ 3 The critical discourse of the liberal peace flags up the problem thatunder the guise of universalising Western liberal frameworks of democracy and the market – the needs and interests of those subject to intervention are often ignored, resulting in the maintenance of inequalities and conflicts and undermining the asserted goals of external interveners. The critique of international intervention and statebuilding, framed by the construction of the liberal peace, has been highly effective in challenging assumptions of easy fixes to post-conflict situations.4

This article seeks to forward an alternative framework and to question the use of the ‘liberal peace’ rubric to describe and analyse post-conflict and international statebuilding interventions in the post-Cold War period. It will be argued that the critique of liberal peace bears much less relation to policy practice than might be assumed by the critical (radical and policy) discourses and, in fact, appears to inverse the relationship between the critique of the liberal peace and the dominant policy assumptions. The shared desire to critique the liberal peace leads to a set of assumptions and one-sided representations that portray Western policy interventions as too liberal: t

oo fixated on Western models and too keen to allow democratic freedoms and market autonomy. It will be explained here that this view of ‘liberal’ interventions transforming post-conflict societies through ‘immediate’ liberalisation and ‘rapid democratization and marketization’ is a self-serving and fictional policy narrative. 5 This narrative fiction is then used, in the frameworks of policy orientated critiques, as the basis upon which to reflect upon Western policy and to limit policy expectations (while often extending regulatory controls) on the basis that the aspirations of external interveners were too ambitious, too interventionist, and too ‘liberal’ for the states and societies which were the subject of intervention.



It is unfortunate that this policy narrative can appear to be given support by more radical critiques of post-Cold War intervention, similarly framed through the critique of liberal peace. For example, Oliver Richmond is not exceptional in re-reading the catastrophe of the invasion and occupation of Iraq in terms of an ‘attempt to mimic the liberal state’, which has ‘done much to discredit the universal claims of the transferability of the liberal peace in political terms’. 6 Michael Barnett argues that ‘liberal values’ clearly guide peacebuilding activities and that their ‘explicit goal’ is ‘to create a state defined by the rule of law, markets and democracy’. 7 Beate Jahn has argued that ‘the tragedy of liberal diplomacy’ lies in the ideological drive of liberalism, in which intervention is intensified despite the counterproductive results. 8 Foucaultian-inspired theorists, Michael Dillon and Julian Reid, similarly reinforce the claims that the key problematic of intervention is its liberal nature in their assertion that we are witnessing a liberal drive to control and to regulate the post-colonial world on the behalf of neo-liberal or biopolitical power, seeking ‘to globalize the domesticating power of civil society mechanisms in a war against all other modes of cultural forms’.9

This view of a transformative drive to regulate and control the post-colonial world on the basis of the liberal framings of power and knowledge stands in stark contrast to the policy world, in which, by the end of the Cold War, leading policy institutions were already highly pessimistic of the capacities of non-liberal subjects to cope with liberal political, economic and social forms and suspicious of even East and Central European states coping with democracy and the market, let alone those of sub-Saharan Africa. Bringing the critique back in relation with the policy practices seems to suggest that the policy critics of the liberal peace offer succour and consolation to the policymakers rather than critique. This leads to the concern of this article that more radical critiques of the liberal peace may need to ensure that they are not drawn into a framework in which their critical intentions may be blunted.
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