Did What Is Right

According to his own conscience.

Which was against his country’s norms at the time.

A Man for All Seasons.

“You want to know about my motivation, don’t you? Well. It is the kind of sentiments anyone would have when he actually sees refugees face to face, begging with tears in their eyes. He just cannot help but sympathize with them. Among the refugees were the elderly and women. They were so desperate that they went so far as to kiss my shoes, Yes, I actually witnessed such scenes with my own eyes. Also, I felt at that time, that the Japanese government did not have any uniform opinion in Tokyo. Some Japanese military leaders were just scared because of the pressure from the Nazis; while other officials in the Home Ministry were simply ambivalent.

People in Tokyo were not united. I felt it silly to deal with them. So, I made up my mind not to wait for their reply. I knew that somebody would surely complain about me in the future. But, I myself thought this would be the right thing to do. There is nothing wrong in saving many people’s lives….The spirit of humanity, philanthropy…neighborly friendship…with this spirit, I ventured to do what I did, confronting this most difficult situation—and because of this reason, I went ahead with redoubled courage.”

Yes, There is the banality of evil.

And, Yes, he probably did pay for his life-saving kindness.  He had a tough life,  but the approximately 20,000 descendents of the individuals who he helped are glad that he did the right thing, in his own mind.

Others could not, and more importantly, did not do the same.  But, it was a natural thing, FOR HIM.  It’s called personality: Character AND Temperament, two sides of the same coin.  You cannot separate them.  It is a whole.

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They Couldn’t Have Been Friends

They were too much alike. They were contenders.  Strategic Contenders.   Not contending with each other.  Their ideas were similar, and they questioned the “authorities”: where ever or whom ever, they may be. Their enemies were the same: mediocrity — the banal, the unquestioning conformity.  For they were exceptional.

Brilliant. Sui generis.


That is the problem. They couldn’t have been friends. Even though both were combating the elite Intellectual Mob Totalitarians.

And the herd majority.

They had seen it with their own eyes: the systems that demanded conformity: Nazi Germany and Soviet Union.

And there were those who fully embraced that conformity and propagated it, without thinking, because it is to their short-term advantage to travel with the herd.

Nothing is more obstinate than a fashionable consensus.
— Margaret Thatcher

They both had fled to America as emigrants. They found those in the elite establishment in their new country would not like or ignored of much of what they had to say — at least, in the beginning… Continue reading They Couldn’t Have Been Friends

The Ghost of Khan

You can’t find where his corporeal body is buried. And it certainly isn’t buried in Russia.  He, personally, never stepped a foot in the Rus’ lands.

History is Baroque!
Will and Ariel Durant

But what about his Zeitgeist?


Yesterday and Today?

If we curse the past, if we blank it out of our memory as my father did, nothing will get better.
Our history is both cursed and magnificent. Just like the history of any state or people.
It is fitting Russia, the tragedies;
these contradictory strands of history are woven so tightly together. 

Boris Yeltzin

Zeitgeist (Zeit –Time, geist –Ghost)

It’s a tale of Black Gold.

Ah, but what kind of Black Gold are we talking about?

The Black Gold of the Earth: that Good Earth: Land and Power of Mother Russia.

The Black Gold of the Earth: that Good Earth: Oil and Gold of Mother Russia.

On the Wealth of Nations.
Who owns the Rents — Economic and/or Political?

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