You can read this and other fine recent Daniel Larison for an explanation of just how shameful this sort of post-hoc rationalizing of murder and destruction really is, but what actually strikes me as the most inhuman, the most anti-human idea of all the inhuman ideas lodged in the reptilian, blood-drinking brains of Thomas Friedman and his crocodilian cohort, is the horrific notion that the highest lifetime achievement is voting in an election. Seriously. The pinnacle of the human experience at the ballot box. It is quite seriously insane. It elevates a procedural aspect of one particular form of government to a categorical moral virtue. It proposes that participation in electoral politicking occupies the same plane of significance and value as orgasm or childbirth, as making a home, as cooking a meal for one's family, as meeting a new lover, as seeing a beautiful work of art or hearing an ingenious piece of music, as singing, as dancing, as getting a good night's sleep, as spending a day on the water, as bartering and bargaining at the marketplace, as religious ecstasy, if you're into that sort of thing . . . I mean, there is a whole panoply of centrally human experiences, and while a weak argument can be made that these are more readily available under some forms of governance than others, acts of civic engagement just aren't that fucking important. A life without elections or a life without lovemaking? If you had to choose. And that is what's so goddamned monstrous about Friedman. We destroyed these people's lives, and we propose to buy off their suffering with congressional campaigns? Jesus wept.