The … book was nothing but a study of decay: of narcotics; dispossessed thinking; false conversions to Catholicism; and complex psychopathic personalities … heroes are unhappy in that they have no faith and no sense of meaning in their work … man became impervious to any metaphysical concerns …

Czeslaw Milosz

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These are the words of the Polish poet, writer and intellectual Czeslaw Milosz written in or about 1951 about Stanislaw Ignacy Witkiewicz’s book Insatiability and the destructive nature of the Communist state in post-War Poland.

They come to mind amid the brouhaha over the movie The Interview in which two Americans proceed to North Korea to assassinate their head of state.  Yes, the film is intended as a comedy about political assassination.

This nonsensical episode made me think of the tragic and deadly terrorist assault on Benghazi which the Democrat administration explained was prompted by an amateur internet video with anti-Muslim content.

Let’s see, an insulting, private amateur video was denounced while a movie comedy about political assassination was not. Hum … Logic and consistency seem to be missing.

Czeslaw saw in Communist Poland a land without faith and meaning, a narrow-minded conformity to the Marxist way of seeing, a godless way of “experiencing” existence.  In this genre, there is no demand for consistency.  Indeed, any standard of truth is irrelevant.  Such is conformity to ideology.  Such is the cost of centralized power and a single way of thinking.  In such a state, those who command are not taken to consistency or addressing their inconsistencies.

As Czeslaw and others in that last and present century show us – a culture in which faith is forestalled and made unwelcome gives rise to singular and narrow thinking, illogical results, incoherency, a loss of honesty and liberty and, in time, despair and loss of confidence, contentment and community.

Healthy governance and leadership require consistency and an explanation when it is absent.

Shalom.

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