Sunday, July 31, 2016

Inequality Drinking Game

It only has one rule: take a shot every time a multi-millionaire or a billionaire laments the existence of wealth inequality.

Water the drinks down or you'll die of alcohol poisoning.

Future historians and General Woundwort

The eventual condemnation of a person or movement by future historians doesn't strike me as a very worrisome fear. First because it's not certain just who will be writing the history books. Second, because it's even less clear who will write the history books after them.

But more importantly - who are these future people whose opinion I should be concerned with, and why? Are they people who I'd rather admire me - or the movement I attach myself to - or would I regard their rejection, their disgust, or even their fear as a badge of honor?

I remember the comment by the Narrator near the end of Watership Down about General Woundwort, the big villain of the movie:
General Woundwort's body was never found. It could be that he still lives his fierce life somewhere else, but from that day on, mother rabbits would tell their kittens that if they did not do as they were told, the General would get them. Such was Woundwort's monument, and perhaps it would not have displeased him.
I do not think it matters if fear is instead disgust, or distaste, or pity, or anything else negative. And if what we support and advocate now provides some succor to a future people, outnumbered but resilient, well - so much the better.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

On muslim heroes

Tell me that a given muslim emigrated to the US, joined the US military, and then gave his life in this or that conflict. Call him a hero. Sure, I won't object.

But if you turn around and then bitterly say that that young man who gave his life wouldn't have had the opportunity to be such a hero if Islamic immigration was temporarily banned, what can I say - I'm unmoved. Because it's a stupid argument hinged entirely on an emotional appeal, which can be answered by holding up any picture of a muslim bomber of spree-killer and asking how many people would be alive if they were barred from entry or even deported.

If we bar all muslim immigration into the US, there is no doubt in my mind that we will end up barring some great individuals. But we'll also end up barring muslim culture at large, and that's a tangible good itself to many.

If the cost of honoring a muslim war hero means we must allow massive muslim immigration, then the cost is too high, and to hell with the hero. Funny how no number of mothers of children slain by illegal immigrants rouses ever seems to result in talk of how they're owed anything.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Game and the Christian Male

I see a lot of criticisms of the whole Game attitude by Christians, who at times seem to have a lot of valid concerns. It encourages male slutdom, etc.

What tends to put me off is seeing those same critics describe what the ideal relationship between men and women should be, which typically seems to be just-as-powerfully criticized by Game's proponents.

Dalrock covers a lot of the warped views of people who tend to absolutely despise the whole Game thing. As for me, I tend to view it more favorably, but with a load of caveats. Insofar as the culture encourages men to have self-respect and confidence, it seems valuable. And I mean a sincere kind of self-respect and confidence, not that crazy bullshit where someone says that the -real- confident guy is the one who's petrified of offending women, and Wil 'just look at this jackass' Wheaton is considered the essence of masculinity.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Why foreign religious groups aren't welcome in Russia

Because of things like this.
SAMARA, Russia, July 28, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — An American clergyman in the Ukraine was deported for planning to officiate a gay wedding. 
Jim Mulcahy, pastor of Metropolitan Community Church, was arrested at the LGBT center Avers in Samara. The Kremlin’s Vesti News Channel reported that Mulcahy intended to marry LGBT couples and engage in gay propaganda, a violation of his tourist visa.  
Mulcahy is the Metropolitan Community Churches' Eastern Europe Coordinator.  His arrest was videotaped by state-controlled television (NTV). He denies planning to officiate a gay "marriage" but reportedly performed "unspecified ceremonies for homosexuals." 
 Ah, unspecified ceremonies.

Well, in the West we've now moved on past same-sex marriage and are now bullying everyone who doesn't celebrate same-sex marriage, including it into our course curriculum, etc. Russia has apparently decided they have no intention of following the same path, certainly not without a fight.

Which is why when I hear complaints about how horrible it is that Southern Baptists won't be able to easily go to Russia and tell them all why white privilege is real and a terrible thing, I don't get terribly concerned. As they said in Everquest, 'You ruined your own lands, you'll not ruin mine!'

Over 1k pageviews in a day

In order to approve comments, I have to see my site meter. And hey, we just passed over 1k pageviews in a day for the first time. Not bad for a little personal blog.

I wonder why the Brasilian version of Google is bringing people here.

Unity at the DNC


Ah, you can feel the love in the air. And to think they thought the RNC would be the clownshow and the DNC would be all sunny and happy.

Laugh, but not too hard. This may not be an unusual sight after a while.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Trump, Bringer of Joy

An exchange between a reporter and Trump, after he said he hopes the russians release all of Hillary Rotten's emails:
"You said, 'I welcome them to find those 30,000 emails...'" she started.
"Well, they probably have them. I'd like to have them released," Trump interjected.

"Does that not give you pause?" Tur persisted.

"No, it gives me no pause. If they have them, they have them, we might as well [see them]," he responded.

The two then talked over each other for a period of time, as Tur repeated her line of questioning, until Trump eventually concluded with, "Be quiet. I know you want to save her."
Bwahahahaha.

The French headcount

I've been having too much fun watching the DNC implode, so I've missed out on my international news. I did notice that a priest had his head chopped off while he was performing mass, and that the gents involved were ISIS forces who made him kneel at the altar and 'preached a sermon' before doing the job.

I missed the spin, though. How'd the great explainers narrative it up this time?

Did 'this has nothing to do with Islam' get some play? Maybe a bit of 'we're not even sure what religion the ISIS agents are'?

Did we hear anything about how being beheaded in an intentionally blasphemous act makes us stronger? That this exposed how weak ISIS really is? How -lucky- the priest is, because he was allowed to be a martyr for the faith?

What's the hottest lie in the store right now?

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Mainstream Conservatives versus Black Lives Matter - Rick and Morty Style

This seemed like as good an illustration of mainstream conservatives versus Black Lives Matters as one can hope for.


What's Wrong With the Aftermath

Another exchange done. Spoiler alert: Lydia locked the thread. I'm as stunned as you are!

But just as Lydia has the right to do that, I'll be taking my right to respond here. Because this was an issue I care about a bit more than usual.

Sayeth Lyd, regarding cuckservative. (We can say that word here.)
So there we have it. An insult that means that a man has a sexual fetish that has to do with watching his wife have sex with other men is a "shiny, fun new word" and is comparable to calling someone "racist" or "neo-nazi." (Not that the latter could objectively describe actual phenomena or anything. Not that there actually are racists and neo-nazis around in the world to whom one might be referring.) Indeed, not just comparable, but less bad. The latter are describable as "vile." The former is, according to Crude, "completely justified, often, if fierce."
Man, where to begin.

For one thing, I assure you - that word does describe an 'objective phenomena', and there's some creepy fucks skulking around looking for this action. It's a degrading, insulting, humiliating word. It stings. Especially, I've noticed, if one's a bit of a cuck. It also more broadly refers to the phenomena of people who just seem thrilled at the idea of cultural and ethnic replacement - again, a not-unheard-of phenomena, and I don't just mean among the creepier SJWs.

Watching Jeb! walk around and give speeches in spanish - 'I love the idea of a latinized US so much, I decided to help out!' - is the height of conservative cuckery. Yes, I know, he thought he was being a brilliant political trailblazer by marrying a Mexican woman, converting to Catholicism, and learning how to speak spanish. Newsflash: it was not. I do think he's going to be president someday, but that hinges on whether Mexico allows immigrants to run for that office.

As to the 'sexual' angle of the word, with it being implied that that's beyond the pale: cry me a river. I've watched crypto-sexual critique be deployed against people opposed to illegal immigration time and again. I've watched Rick Wilson cackle about how Trump supporters were all anime-watching jackoffs, which makes Trump's stomping of his 'side' that much more hilarious. The cucks' complaint here reminds me of Dawkins' fall from 'How can mockery and derision ever be used against us? We can't lose!' to 'How dare everyone describe me as a pathetic has-been who wasn't even a good biologist!' Same script, different actors.

Finally - 'racists and neo-nazis' accurately describe maybe a hundredth of the people those terms are used against, in any reasonable definition of the word. Same with anti-semite. If you're going to green-light the abundant use of those terms on the grounds that it can, in theory, pick out an 'objective' phenomena, then I assure you - I am not completely convinced that all of Jeb!'s kids are his. And if you object that I can't prove that, then I'll note the inability for most people to sufficiently, meaningfully back up their 'neo-nazi', 'fascist', 'racist' charges beyond 'you said something mean, even if it's true!'
And it's no big deal to tell a black woman that she looks like an ape. 
Honest to God, Lydia - it really isn't. Yes, I know - the comparison is considered highly racist by the invisible yet omnipresent goddess of Decency, but frankly, I just don't care much, and most people don't care much unless they think they can shame someone and get a little power besides. As I've said - it's the sort of thing you say, at most, 'Hey, that's wrong' if pressed about. You know - tsk tsk. Demands that you hunt down such curs and destroy them (but only if they're a victim class, only if they're of the right political persuasion, etc) are inane. Put another way: jerking off is a sin, but I think we can all agree that demanding hands be chopped off over it is an overreaction. Leave it at 'hey, knock that off, and don't do it in front of kids'.

That woman in particular is not easy on the eyes, and she's not particularly pleasant to others either. See her comments about whites, among other things. And see the movie she was involved in, which ran -heavily- on attacking large groups of people who disliked it, saying they're racists, sexists, misogynists and more.
 If she complains about it (and other insults such as "c**n," "n*gg*," etc., she also claimed to have received a picture of herself with s**** on her face) she's "caterwauling," and if I complain about either of these (and others, such as the anti-semitic vileness we have received here) and about people who make a professional hobby of downplaying such things, I'm wasting valuable time which would be better spent on "accomplishments" like, I dunno, ruining the career of a conservative politician who criticizes the alt-right.
Coon, nigga, and semen. Christ, we don't censor any words nowadays EXCEPT the PC 'offensive' ones. Enough.

Oh, she can complain. But screaming and carrying on and demanding that these people - and Milo! - be purged, even if they didn't do anything but because, I don't know, there are subscribers involved? Yeah that's absurd, especially in a world where being inundated with 'cunt' and death threats normally doesn't result in such responses, at least if you're conservative. That conservatives want to rush to get in on the bandwagon - especially Lydia, who in any other case would be accused of doing so only due to massive gay-hating 'homophobia' on her part? Yeah, that's deplorable too.

As for ruining the careers, there's a difference. Those politicians tried mightily to ruin other people's careers. They, finally, failed. But they immolated their own careers in the process. Cruz was allowed to get up onstage and give his pissy little speech. What a shock - it turns out even his supporters hated his attitude. How much sympathy should I have for Cruz destroying himself because he attempted to destroy someone else, and failed miserably? That's leagues different from even what Milo experienced, where his voice on a worldwide platform was cut off, to the apparent approval of the increasingly SJW-like "conservatives".

tl;dr version - we live in a world where conservatives and whites and men get savaged, and no one cares. Not even conservatives, who - as Jeffrey S knows - are sometimes all too happy to chime in with a 'Yeah!' The idea that nevertheless those groups must ride to the fucking rescue whenever someone mocks one of their lowlier figureheads, is insane.
But remember, Crude is just defending the argumentative tactics of Ed Feser. Or something. Not supporting vile insult at all. Got it.
Ed Feser was criticized for The Last Superstition because of his 'polemical tone'. He writes aggressively. I've read every interaction he's had on his blog - he suffers little bullshit, it is true. He will be aggressive. He will even mock. He's also surprisingly sharp with the photoshop now and then.

And I'm not on his level. Ed's a different category, someone who takes very intricate arguments (which I am forever an amateur at best with) and communicates them to the masses, in a way that enlightens them. He arms them with knowledge they can -use-. His intellect and his arguments are his primary weapon, but he has zero problem calling bullshit as bullshit, and engaging in some level of aggressive mockery. We're not in the same category, but at the same time, Ed is -vastly- different from typical Christian philosophers, and philosophers in general. Most of whom fall over themselves to be the most polite, sweet-toned, genteel person in the room, often to their detriment.

That, I think, is what Perilanda may be getting at. Ed talked in ways that few modern philosophers or theologians did. He still does. It -works-. He did it during a time where most critics of New Atheism always started off with talking about how brilliant Dawkins was or how atheists are such great and moral people. Ed cut the shit and accomplished something major in the process.

In a primitive way, the Alt Right does the same. If their Venn diagrams overlap, it's that both Ed and the Alt Right do not automatically kowtow to idols that most everyone else does. They do not pay lip service to glorious truths that are neither glorious nor true. After that, they largely part ways - Ed persuades through reasoned argument and little rhetoric, the alt-right is absolutely heavy on rhetoric - but that overlap is key.

Anyway, that's my response to all this. Not for Lydia's edification - she stopped reading at 'cuck' if she saw it at all - but I felt it needed to be said.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Lydia McGrew joins the alt-right.

Unintentionally of course, but it is what it is.

The truth about these dysfunctional, downscale communities is that they deserve to die. Economically, they are negative assets. Morally, they are indefensible. Forget all your flashy theatrical rap garbage. Forget your idealism about your life in the hood and your idiotic belief that you can either gangbang, rap or dribble a basketball to success. Forget your goddamned 'people', and while you're at it, forget Malcolm X too. The black American underclass is in thrall to a vicious, selfish culture whose main products are single fathers and crack addictions. Obama's speeches make them feel good. So does dope. What they need isn't analgesics, literal or political. They need real opportunity, which means that they need to stop whining about their lot in life, go to the library, and learn how to read.
When asked if the above hypothetical passage flies, Lydia McGrew had this to say:

Actually, I thought at the time when I read the Williamson article that I _did_ think rather similar things could be rightly said about the black communities. Tough love, as it were. And not, ipso facto, racist. Indeed, *mainstream* conservatives used to say that the black community is dysfunctional and its own worst enemy and needs to pull itself up by the bootstraps. I suppose there are still some mainstream conservatives that do, though it's become less acceptable in the last twenty years or so. But I'm old enough to remember when it wasn't. 
Which isn't to say that I agree with every bit of your translation. I think in particular substituting "people" for "gypsum" is more than a bit weird. There are other bits I could disagree with as far as their equivalence to the original. But overall, the general level of straight-talk harshness in neither of the quotes offends me and is not the kind of thing I am condemning. 
So sorry your experiment backfired. Well, no, actually, I'm not sorry at all. I just tell the truth around here. You don't have to like it. 

To which I responded:

Backfired? Far from it, Lydia. It means that harsh, racially-focused condemnation of a community's failings isn't horrible or condemnable at all. 
Which means, in one fell swoop, you've managed to defend a whole lot of what the alt-right says yet is routinely attacked and denounced for. 
Lydia McGrew... welcome to the alt-right! 

Meanwhile, at WWWtW

Apparently the alt-right conversation lit up a bit after my last comments. News to me - I hadn't been back there since the last dustup.

So, a few comments.

First, to Perilanda - whoever that is - well, thanks for the kind words. Always pleasantly surprised when I know more folks are reading this than I suspect, and some are actually getting something out of it. Humility's probably not my strongest point, though; I'm just realistic.

Chillanodon, meanwhile, chimed in with:
It just sickens me that today, in the current year, a large, loud, black woman can't be paid thousands of dollars to play a large, loud black woman in a super-lazy-cash-grab of a movie without going on Twitter and receiving texts from anonymous users that imply she is, in fact, a large, loud black woman who does resemble other things if you squint hard enough.
Ah, you bastard, you got me cackling! But it's true.

To this end, let me clear up a few things.

First, I don't think the entirety of conservatism - even the alt-right-hating wing - has been mistaken, or wrong, or in need of repudiation. It'd be hard for me to condemn, say... literate, well-spoken, intellectually forceful arguments. I'm a Feser-fan and have been since the olden days. You can't have a strong appreciation of A-T metaphysics and classical theism and think reasoned argument is useless, or God-forbid, counterproductive. It has its place, and that place is important - it's for a certain class of individual.

Convoluted legal arguments won't budge most people in the world, for example. But if they manage to convince a judge? Well, that's going to have one hell of an impact potentially. That's important, and it's necessary.

But it ain't the only thing in the world by a longshot, as Ted Cruz - damn good lawyer, I hear - hopefully realizes by now.

Worse, conservatives have had to face a torrent of abuse laid against them, largely in popular media they don't have much control over. And they've tried to combat this abuse in the worst possible way - by striving to prove that it's not true, to an audience that couldn't care less if it WAS true, because what's important is the accusation and the stigma rather than the reality. The result has been, over and over again, not just criticism of fellow conservatives, but the destruction of them when they commit some social sin: people get fired from their jobs, banished from social circles, attacked and ridiculed.

Lately, they get banished from major social media platforms. For life. In Milo's case, not for actually saying anything himself, but because people who follow him did unspeakable things, like make fun of some windbag of an actress. I know, because I read his damn tweets.

And, once again, it becomes a great opportunity for some conservatives to huff and chide one of their largely-allies and talk about how vile some of those tweets were and suggesting that it was all deserved and how we shouldn't be sympathetic (or outraged) on Milo's behalf, because the REAL story is how mean he is.

As a guy who used to play some of this game, sincerely: no thanks. Also, fuck that action.

Fuck the attitude that the principle rule of being a conservative is vicious, unrelenting self-policing of tone, lest someone accuse us collectively of what they damn will accuse us of anyway, or because we're committing some suspiciously modern sin. To hell with the constant fretting of whether this or this word, or action, or even -thought- may shock and mortify the victim classes (or more specifically, their self-appointed keepers.)

By the way, that doesn't mean I think conservatives or the right should unanimously turn a blind eye to, or mindlessly celebrate, each and every action deemed 'non-PC'. I'll say if I think some joke about this person or that person or this group or that group is wrong-headed, or unfunny, or the like. Others should too. However, just saying 'Yeah I didn't like that joke' doesn't seem to be an option - and God forbid, the idea that you can say 'I don't like the joke, or the comment, but how dare you try to purge them for it you lunatic' seems alien to a good share of conservatives, or at least conservative bloggers and writers.

To put it succinctly, consider this: the conservative obsession with being the least-offensive person isn't some wise and wily move, crafted to evade the nastiest charges of the left. It is defeat itself. It's a concession that yes, as a matter of fact they CAN control your language, your behavior, your associations, and ultimately your thought, because they can determine what's stigmatized and you'll react accordingly. Conservatives have said that they can't out-spend the left on social services, because the left has no limit with what they're willing to spend. Sorry guys: they're willing to out-pander you to every victim class as well.

One of the things you CAN do better than them is - oddly enough, for Christians - out-blaspheme them. You can out-laugh them, you can mock more, you can enjoy more speech, and you can have a lot more fun. And you can care a whole lot less about their precious stigmas, their ever-more-labyrinthine rules for their secular religion. That's one area they can't outdo you, because to even try would be defeat for -them-.

Trump learned that rule, and he won the nomination - and will quite possibly win the presidency. Milo learned that rule and he won a ton of fans and notoriety. Laughing at their rules, mocking their sacred cows, engaging in a bit of secular shamelessness, and refusing to whip and attack and savage your allies for the high crime of wrongthink is not just more fun. It is, often enough, the right thing to do.

Christians should not worship and honor idols, ladies and gentlemen. Secular ones are no better than pagan ones.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Fast thoughts 7/24

* The Republican convention was satisfying, at least as a Trump enthusiast. There's a bit of poetic justice in watching the Colorado delegation in particular get railroaded on the convention floor via, shall we say, strict adherence to the convention rules. The fact that they were trying to kick up dust at this stage of the game says a lot, but oh well - I guess they 'have to work on their ground game', as they'd say.

* I was sad to see Milo get kicked off twitter, but given how many times they've attempted to punish him, it was kind of an eventuality. Twitter, like Facebook, tries to squelch voices it doesn't like, and Milo's been in their crosshairs for a while. Team Morality at WWWtW huffed and puffed about this, talking about how this was deserved because... well, Milo's followers (not even Milo himself) tweeted mean racist jokes at the actress, and this is absolutely reprehensible. My own view is that I've stopped giving a shit about self-policing racism and sexism among people I'm otherwise sympathetic to (or just find funny), and further that the bar for 'despicable racism' is way too high anyway. I'll worry about sexist comments when making fun of a man's appearance or gender is unacceptable, and I'll worry about Harambe jokes re: black women when mocking 'whitesplaining' is a nigh-universally fireable offense. Or maybe the whole world SHOULD be more relaxed about such jokes in the sense of a free-for-all.

* Speaking of attacking one's own allies, I've come the conclusion that Ted Cruz honestly has no idea how badly he comes off at times. I think part of the problem is that he's made a career out of being the annoying shit to the right people (I liked him flat out calling McConnell a liar, etc), but I'm worried that his ability to be a real shit does not have an 'off' switch, and thus far he's just luckily channeled it in the right direction. His convention floor speech was the most clear case of 'being given the rope to hang oneself with 'that I've ever seen, and I think thoughts about how he's wisely positioning himself for a 2020 run are, shall we say, insanely optimistic. Actually just insane.

* An upside of the Milo banning was that it's provoked some people to come out of the woodwork to support him. Gadfly Notch, being one. Even - shockingly - Wikileaks, who I think are fast changing from 'left-wing favorite' to 'target of left-wing hate'. As of this writing they've managed to skunk Wasserman-Schultz, who has had to resign in the wake of her emails being outed. Not bad work. Who would have thought rogue hacktivists would be cheering on alt-right figures and taking down Democrats this election? We've got one hell of a ride ahead of us.

* The alt-right's performance has been the best thing to come out of this election, and the result has been the rise of a host of figures who are weird, eloquent, funny, and... to be honest, kind of reminiscent of Batman villains. That may or may not be related to me wanting to see Lauren Southern dressed up in a Harley Quinn outfit. Regardless, they're superior replacements to mainstream conservatives, much as I've liked some of George Will's work in the past.

* The Democrat convention hasn't even started yet and already blood has been drawn, with Wasserman Schultz going down faster than Milo at a Black Lives Matter march. Sanders is under pressure not to endorse the Lizard Queen, but let's face it - the guy has no balls, and he'll do as he's told. But between the heat, the Wikileaks scandals, and the wild card that is Black Lives Matter, this shit may be hilarious. If so, it'll be amazing to see happen after the supposedly Hitleriffic Trump, in Cleveland of all places, hardly resulted in any protests at all. (Ohio being an open carry state may have had something to do with that, as I imagine the aura of 'Uh, don't Republicans tend to carry guns?' tends to put the damper on more excited displays of troublemaking.)

Saturday, July 23, 2016

The difference between the alt right and conservatives

Alt Right: I think there are bigger problems on the horizon than tending to the delicate social sensitivities of the left's most precious victim classes.

Conservatives: Being a conservative is first and foremost about keeping in mind the delicate social sensitivities of others, since maintaining the social order is paramount. What's the point of solving bigger problems if people think we're jerks in the process?

Principles uber alles

Praising someone for their commitment to their principles, regardless of what those principles actually are, invites a kind of twin sickness.

First, it obfuscates the necessity of *good* principles. If simply having some standards that one commits to (whatever they may be) is praiseworthy, then we undercut our ability to encourage people for having good principles, or discourage those who have bad ones.

This leads to a compensatory measure: by denying that people with 'bad' principles are really principled at all. Hitler did not sincerely believe he was doing the right thing - if he did, then he was principled, and we can't have -that-. Instead, he had to never really believe what he was saying, and the whole thing was just a bid for power and glory, or maybe just madness.

Play that game and you can at least describe a world where only people beholden to 'good' principles really exist after all. Convenient!

But if it's not true - and if it's easy to realize that it's not true - then you're setting the groundwork for a horrible and confusing culture of misdirection and mistrust.

Which, to a degree, seems to be exactly where we are right now.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Why do people take an instant dislike to Ted Cruz?

Because it saves a lot of time.

(Saw this somewhere, got a laugh.)

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Brief thoughts 7/17/2016

Enthusiasm for the coup in Turkey - and remorse at its failure at the hands of a spontaneously uprising populace - gives a glimpse of the real state of 'democratic ideals' in the US. That Erdogan was elected (indeed, that he's pretty popular) doesn't mean a thing to people. All they know is that he's a muslim and wants greater muslim influence in Turkey, and thus he's not taking up our prized values. Like our respect for democratic political processes. This isn't to say I think Erdogan is a good guy, but I grimly suspect he has a clearer view of the world than many other leaders, and that he's a nationalist besides.

Fallout from Nice continues, with it being confirmed that the killer was an ISIS member, yet another local who radicalized extremely quickly. The response from the French authorities is apparently that this is the new normal and the proper thing to do is to just get used to it, and show those terrorists they're not going to react improperly to such mass killings. 'Improperly' apparently means 'vote for nationalists, protect their borders and the culture'. Earlier in the day, Hollande said that the real threat was right-wing nationalists, and it's fast becoming clear that leftists would rather die altogether than live in a world where their values were exposed as unworkable, to say nothing of wrong.

Fallout from Black Lives Matters continues as well, with yet another targeted killing of cops by a cop-hating, BLM-loving black man. Right now the left is in a state of growing panic, since every time this happens it becomes harder and harder not to criticize the very elements that give the Black Lives Matter engine its fuel. Let's face it: remove the cop-hating, white-hating elements from BLM and you're not getting nationwide marches anymore. In fact, you're not even getting a coherent message anymore.

#NeverTrump fizzled out, with its adherents reduced to hoping Hillary wins - and make no mistake, that's exactly what they're hoping. A Trump victory in November would mean they not only look foolish (half of their cries are 'he can never win!'), but their place in the party would probably be gone for good. Jeb Bush is already talking about the necessity of purging the party of Trump supporters and influence, in favor of replacing it with the most bland pablum I've ever seen. I fully expect that within a decade, Jeb will be in Mexico, renouncing his citizenship, no matter what happens. I've tried feeling sorry for him, but to put it bluntly, it's hard to feel sorry for people that pathetic.

Has anyone noticed that the fight has gone out of a lot of New Atheists? They snarl, they spit, but I think their morale has taken a nosedive, even with the continued irreligiosity in America. It has to feel like hell to notice that 'irreligion' and 'the spread of feminism, Islam-worship and general cuckery' go hand in hand. I think a sizable slice of anti-Christians find themselves on the Trump train, and are quickly dropping to a 'well they aren't as bad as atheism+ types' as a tradeoff. Meanwhile the atheism+ atheists are stuck with having to pretend Islam is a religion of peace no matter how many body parts fly through the air.

Interesting times and all.

What black people have to put up with

One of the biggest problems facing black people in America today: the stigma of being associated with criminals and racists, like Black Lives Matter.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Secularism as an alternative religion

If you wonder why I don't get all excited when I hear about a secular coup in a muslim country (at least, not on those terms alone), it's because I regard the secular as an alternative religion, not the absence of religion. Secular religion(s), maybe, as diverse as there are political philosophies - except secularism on the whole has a pretty nasty track record. There are better strains of it, but recognizing those strains means I have to differentiate between one and the other.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Meanwhile in Turkey

I have the feeling a bunch of officers are about to learn the meaning of the phrase, "When you try to shoot the king, don't miss."

Also, credit where it's due. Muslims are many things, but cowards? We should be so lucky. Civilians climbing on top of a tank that's driving over cars, intending to pull the commander out and beat the shit out of him... that's impressive.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Nice Job

As they try to keep an accurate body count in France, remember the real victims today: SJWs.

A muslim attack by someone who didn't even have the decency to use a gun? How will they twist this for political grandstanding today?

I'm sure it was the work of Christians trying to throw water on the upcoming Black Lives Matter ho-downs.

Edit: Oh and if you're on Facebook be sure to bust out those stupid French Flag filters again and update your mood to some frowny face emoji or something.

Splitting the difference != fairness

Republicans, at least Republican party leadership, tends to respond to Black Lives Matter style controversies like this:

"Look, let's be reasonable here. We'll grant that Black Lives Matter has legitimate concerns, but you have to grant that cops aren't always bad."

On the surface, it sounds reasonable. If we were dealing with reasonable people, it may actually be reasonable.

In reality, here's how it cashes out:

"Okay. Your demands are crazy. But if you admit an obvious truth, we'll submit to some of your demands. Now isn't that fair?"

Of course, they scream up a storm about this - and then accept it, grudgingly, knowing that they're making progress.

Imagine if the statement was more like this:

"Look, let's be reasonable here. We'll grant that Black Lives Matter has legitimate concerns. But so does Trump and BLM's critics."

Well, that would be interesting. But the GOP establishment has absolutely no interest in taking that position, because then they'll have to actually criticize BLM - which would immediately pit them against corporations and groups they're eager to curry favor with in general.

It's not 'fair' to roll over, or concede without argument. It's cowardice. It's also the habit of the modern GOP.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Always do the opposite of what David French says

That's the only conclusion I can come to, glancing at his most recent column.

I'll spare you the link, and I'll summarize his lesson: the best way to fight political correctness and SJWs is to avoid doing anything that will upset them. See, by upsetting them you prove them right, and then they just hate you. But if you try mightily to avoid all that, and attempt to give long, drawn out, esoteric and intellectual arguments instead... well, they'll hate you. But then they'll have less of a reason to, so in a way you win!

What I marvel at is how French can still repeat these lines and yammer on about the best way to fight a war that French and company consistently lost ground on, but barely fought at all. It's like telling the NRA that they have to be reasonable, that when they stock up on AK-47s and pick up concealed carry licenses they're only confirming the worst fears of their enemies. So far the wages of confirming those fears has been the massive spread of concealed carry laws and the NRA being able to stand up to one piece of gun control legislation after the other.

Come to think of it, I recall the LGBT forces being as absolutely obnoxious and in your face as possible. Now they're in a position of cultural dominance.

What's progress looking like at National Review lately? At this point, the only form of it is in hoping and praying that Trump loses the election, so they can say 'I told you so!' moments before their magazine folds due to lack of funds.

Smart money says to do the opposite of whatever French and company advise.

An atheist dying for the theocracy

There's nothing contradictory about an atheist giving his life - willfully - to support a theocracy, especially if atheism is redefined to mean 'lack of belief in God's existence'. Someone who lacks the belief can still have the hope that God exists, and even a convinced atheist can believe that a great country would still be a country that promotes religious belief.

Modern self-described atheists bristle at these ideas, but that's because they never really buy their own definitions of atheism. 'Atheism as non-belief' is about inflating numbers and feeling part of a group that's much larger than it really is, or is likely to really ever be.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Bernie Sells Out

Is anyone surprised that Sanders ultimately bowed to Clinton? Anyone at all?

The man couldn't even defend his own podium from pushy, loud women. What chance did he ever have against the harpy?

I will say, though, that watching previously left-wing 'Occupy Wall Street' supporting SJWs justifying their vote for Clinton is quite a sight to behold. I knew it was coming - I don't think SJWs believe their own rhetoric - but knowing it was on the way doesn't make its arrival any less fun to watch.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Marriage versus parenting

So far, the dispute in the Church over marriage has been concerned with just that - marriage. People's promises to each other, under the attention of God, and the union they make. And, as usual, the entire question quickly gets framed as one of 'mercy'. Are we really going to make two people live together for the rest of their lives (under penalty of being considered sinning, anyway), just because they both made a promise to each other that they were too stupid to understand the meaning or at least the gravity of at the time?  Come on, etc.

Okay: go with the 'mercy' logic. Say it's unfair, even unreasonable, to expect people to honor their marriage vows, on the grounds that they had no idea what they were getting into. Fine.

Now, turn around, and tell me that - marriage or not - they have to look after their kids for the rest of their lives. Even though you can (and more and more, people often do) make a child without even an oath being involved. Most marriages involve a hell of a lot of lead-up and planning in our culture, longer than it used to. Making kids is as easy as it ever was, and far more all-consuming than a marriage is. You can take some time away from your spouse to cool your jets. Doing that with a kid requires money or criminal neglect.

Tell me -that- isn't a potential recipe for a couple decades of misery too, or that people had no idea what they were getting into there either. Will someone be pleading the case to me that a guy shouldn't have to be on the hook for at a minimum 18 years of his life just because he made a several-minute consensual mistake? You don't expect him to stick around with his wife because he or she were ignorant. But sticking around to take care of a kid, -that- he understood the gravity of? To say nothing of the mother being expected to do the same?

Even if you put the 'abortion' phantom aside, this invites a tangle of questions, none of which have good answers. And the same general kind of logic which says 'Well, mommy and daddy are happier and (in their minds, anyway) better people when they aren't together, so it's okay when they split up' is going to be pretty easy to recycle for 'Well, mommy and daddy are happier and (in their minds, anyway) better people when you're not around, so it's okay that they left'. The only reason it hasn't happened yet is because SOMEone has to take care of that kid once it's born, orphanages are scary (and thus social stigma stays in place a bit more easily), and the compromise has been to treat the state as a father stand-in insofar as it will write checks and try to shake down dad for his share for as long as possible.

How long that situation can last is an open question, but I think it's safe to say it requires - at a minimum - a constant flow of money from the government to have any hope of lasting. And that's speaking purely in a pragmatic sense where we ignore, contrary to what feminists would like to insist, how screwed up these kids and households alike tend to be. Watch what happens if a severe economic downturn pops up.

But to circle it back, the question will eventually become: if the duties and obligations of marriage are treated as null and void largely on the grounds of 'Well, you didn't know what you were getting into', how in the world do you keep the duties and obligations of parenthood itself in place? Argument from 'Well damn it's going to be real inconvenient if we don't'? Argument from 'Well we don't care if it's tough, this is your responsibility now and if you can't handle it then stop breathing'?

More segregation demanded by black leaders

Only black police can patrol black communities!

If this becomes a major theme of BLM, it's going to be extremely interesting. The left wing has already had to about-face on issue after issue to get behind Hillary Clinton. Watching them pivot on racial segregation of all things will be yet more icing for that particular cake.

God and Sexism

By modern standards - aka, terrible and typically silly standards - God is unavoidably sexist. Whether by from-the-dust direct creation, evolutionary planning, or otherwise, God created two sexes with wildly different capacities: one sex gets pregnant, and the other sex impregnates.

Let that sink in. God created humans, and then explicitly created two sexes, with wildly different sexual capabilities. That's before getting into every other physical characteristic that differs or on-average differs.

That ain't the act of an egalitarian, ladies and gentlemen. That's the act of someone who not only tolerates innate, immutable differences, but who created them to begin with.

Tell me again how God would never, ever enshrine, sustain or justify 'sexism'.

Female clergy have been a boon for our church!

Whenever I hear the title phrase, this image immediately pops into my head:


New Black Panthers urge mass black migration to southern states, setting up their own nation

Segregation, in other words.

Whenever segregation and separate-but-equal talk comes up, the (often unspoken, sometimes not) left-wing assumption is that it was horrible... precisely because it denied poor black folk the pleasure of white people's company, intellect and superior example. Alternately, because it denied white people some touching moments and good food.

The idea that some black people would reject white people's company is hard for many SJWs to grok, and often gets treated as a symptom of a problem as opposed to a 'real' conclusion. You know -- 'You don't want me around? Even though I attend Black Lives Matter rallies and I hate Republicans? Oh my goodness gracious, you poor thing, clearly the difficulties of your circumstances have driven you mad!'

As for the idea itself, I think it's a bad one for a lot of reasons. I also think it's an idea whose approval/disapproval rates will map heavily along geographic lines if it ever got aired outside of a tiny audience.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

How to tell if your priorities are out whack as a conservative

If the first thought in your mind after the Dallas shooting was a dreadful worry that someone may be prompted to say something racist in light of the event, you've got a problem you need to address.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Pope urges pride in motherland, resistance to globalism and colonization by foreigners

Oh wait, he's talking about Argentina.
“Yes, children of the homeland,” Francis continues. “At school we were taught to refer to it as the Motherland, to love the motherland. This is where the root of patriotic sentiment lies: in the love for the motherland. In Argentina we have a bold and sometimes quirky expression to refer to people without scruples: “this guy’s even capable of selling his own mother”. But we know, deep down that a Mother in never for sale, you can’t sell your Mother… and neither can you sell the Motherland.” 
I'm pretty sure this contrasts with his admonitions to America and Europe, which goes along the lines of, 'You have to accept an absolutely unlimited number of illegal immigrants and refugees, as well as tons of foreign entanglements, or else Jesus hates you.'

Rooftop Snipers? That's new.

Remember: saying that abortion is murder is hate-fueled hate-language, and whenever some off-his-meds bum shoots in the direction of an abortion clinic, pro-lifers are personally responsible.

But when some crazy black commando in the traditional dress of a black supremacist gets up on a roof and goes on a sniping spree, it's got nothing to do with protesters. Even if he screams that he wants to kill white people and he's a big Black Lives Matters supporter.

Someone should tell Obama that this guy could have been his son. I'd love to see the look on his face if that's brought up in a press conference.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Lydia declares victory, shuts down discussion

Over at WWWtW, Lydia has closed comments because yours truly was arguing with her.

See, I've got this particular sin. Sins, really. I will make claims, and I will buttress my argument with points - evidence, or rationales, which serve to advance my claims. In this case: Western civilization has a lot of shared values, shared across various religious beliefs or unbeliefs, etc. Some of these shared values are toxic, and have been doing harm not only to us, but to other cultures we expose them to. Russia - which has its own problems, but different ones - is trying to shield itself from our influence, in part because of these problems. They are not wrong to do so, and in fact our condemnation of them is short-sighted.

Lydia's response has basically been to swing her arms wildly and scream at the top of her lungs, accusing me of things that are just... wild. Like my supposedly blaming protestantism for gay marriage, which is quite a trick since I explicitly said more than once that even Catholics are part of this 'Western problem' I speak of. I've pointed out that churches don't just 'communicate love for the Lord Jesus Christ' but act as yet more NGOs which can spread various ideas, hence Soros happily funding them at times. I've noted that Lydia herself doesn't care just about Jesus - she expressed fury that Russia doesn't have full-blown Western-style 'freedom of religion' laws, inviting all and sundry to spread their religious beliefs, community and cultural unity be damned. Lydia ignores this, then accuses me of saying Southern Baptists will spread gay marriage through missionaries.

It's pretty bonkers.

I'll skip psychoanalyzing her in favor of pointing out a few things.

There is no such thing as 'just spreading Jesus'. Baptists don't want to spread mere belief in Christ, but the Baptist faith. A new religious community, in a country largely used to cultural and theological homogeneity, even during its worst times. And its one which has some very strong views about how government should be run and how lives should be led, most of which stand in opposition to Russian culture, practice and traditional faith. I am sympathetic to Russian Orthodox who do not relish the idea of helping not only turn their country away from their own faith, but closer to one of a teeming milieu of competing views of God and religion. America is that mix - we have been a mix, at least nationally, from the start. For good or ill, heterogeneity is the norm here. It's not in Russia, never has been. I do not feel outraged that they wish to avoid it.

That's a statement against new religions across the board in Russia. They seem content to protect Orthodoxy and their extant minorities. I further note that Russia doesn't just dislike new religions - they dislike Western influence, period. They have been cracking down on NGOs, foreign ties, and more - including secular. It is also not unheard of for religions to be used as a vector to spread secular values. Normally, this is something we religious people brag about, and we hope and pray that (say) China will change substantially as Christianity continues to take root there. It does no good to deny this reality where Russia is concerned, especially when it's documented that full-blown irreligious like Soros will happily dump money on churches precisely to 'give them a voice' and let them advance their religious cases - which always come with secular pushes as well.

The fact is, I think churches in the west are in a poor state. We should recognize that before cheering on their continued influence elsewhere. At the very least, in the case of Russia - which seems to be doing things we should hope to do, in terms of spreading faith and making itself a cultural cornerstone. I know that Baptists may scream that the Orthodox are quasi-papists whose practices may be leading them to hell, but frankly the Baptists seem to be contracting a case of self-effacing shame which may well prove to be fatal over time. I am more emboldened and encouraged by the spread of Russian orthodoxy than I am by the Baptists' desire to go over and get in on things. Or, for that matter, for the Catholics to do so. Imagine explaining the Pope to them right now.

The Russian Orthodox have gall; they regard Russia as, by and large, theirs. Theirs by historical right, by cultural right, and they believe laws and practice should reflect that. I'm Catholic, and while Russian orthodoxy has a unique relationship with Catholics, I find that concerning in a sense. I would like Catholicism to spread in Russia. On the other end of the spectrum we have Western religions, which - last I checked - can't even run a formally religious school without making ample allotment for LGBT clubs, clubs of every other faith, secular alliances and more. Because we're so open minded, and more importantly, so powerfully ashamed of being accused of promoting our values to the exclusion of others'.

Pardon me if I think the Russians are less in the wrong here, in a very real sense.

By the way: I don't even hold it against Lydia that she'd shut down discussion. Their blog, their rules. Rather like a microcosm of the Russian situation, in a way. I just likewise hold my right to reply on my own turf.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

What's Wrong With the World Replies

Since they've started moderating me:

Tony,

When we talk about a country that "has one religion" we generally mean a country in which the VAST, overwhelming majority hold one religion, upwards of 90% and perhaps even upwards of 95%.


What you mean we, kimosabe.

Besides, there's little in the way of competing religion in Russia - in large part, and certainly historically, it's just been 'Russian Orthodox' with a whole lot of irreligion. And even the irreligious had their cultural roots in the Orthodox.

You can't just make laws against ordinary daily life for 40% of the population that is conformed to what has been a kind of norm for years (even if not generations and generations), in the HOPE to achieve a future social unity. The social and "secular advantages" of religion don't justify that.


With respect, Tony - they can, and they have. With tremendous success. Is it perfect? No. Good God no. But it is a tremendous improvement. And before you object that these results came before this law, I'll note that they've been playing this game for a while now. Apparently they can do the very thing you said they can't, with the results you insisted would not come to fruition.

I note that you talk about the ethical lack of warrant (based on what? who knows) to introduce laws that favor a particular religion in Russia, on the grounds that for decades they had atheism imposed on them. Supporting orthodoxy would therefore be unthinkable. But they've had free and unrestricted influence from foreign religions - indeed, western style democracy, in a tangible sense - pretty much never.

And these laws - combined with the clamp down on secular media with perspectives different from the government's agenda, and other institutions that don't like Putin - are part and parcel of a new totalitarianism, not of state atheism and an agenda of dialectical materialism, but of state rule for the sake of retained state rule: power alone.


Well, no. It seems more like power for a particular view - Russian supremacy. What are the alternatives? Tell me 'Freedom! Sexual liberation!' - we could use some comedy here.

It's weird that you keep saying what the Russians cannot do, what they are unable to do, what the people won't have imposed on them. Then I turn around and look at what Russia's done, and how they're celebrating Putin and company for doing it. The irreligious in Russia have expressed their outrage at Yeltsin's law by converting in droves, buoying belief in God, and more. Apparently no one ever told them it was impossible.

Lydia,

There exist in abundance Protestant evangelicals in Russia, or would-be missionaries to Russia, who are all in favor of gay "marriage"?


I keep noting that the problem isn't limited to gay marriage, Lydia, but to a host of other influences. But frankly? If you think Soros and company are above funding churches, keep dreaming. It's like you people regard NGOs trying to influence governments and public opinion as some kind of nonsense bogeyman. Surely churches would never advance such things!

Please.

In any event, there are about five hundred kajillion ways for _any_ society to oppose propaganda for homosexual "marriage" that have precisely _zilch_ to do with opposing "missionary work."


Isn't this just so like us Americans.

'Here's five hundred kajillion ways to oppose propaganda for homosexual "marriage" that isn't like Russia's!'
"Oh, how many of them worked in your country?"
'None, but there are WAYS, damnit.'

Perhaps the ways aren't enough. In fact, perhaps focusing on gay marriage alone is insufficient.

You are merely trying to make the connection because you fancy yourself some kind of intellectual reactionary and


Gong.

The idea that this law is _about_ homosexuality or has _anything_ to do with the spread of homosexual propaganda or that it is somehow _so difficult_ to think of ways to prevent the spread of homosexuality and homosexualist policies in Russia without _this_ type of law about "missionary activity,"


As I keep saying, and which you keep ignoring - perhaps due to that 'boredom' - this isn't limited to LGBT nonsense. Not by a longshot. I notice you've bitten your tongue with regards to how the Southern Baptists are dealing with their 'confederate flag' issue, and what it says about their mentality and character.

Not that the Russians are so great; they have some considerable cultural successes, and some major flaws too. Different flaws, but flaws all the same. You, meanwhile, can only notice that there may be fewer baptist missionaries in Russia. Believe me: not the biggest problem in the world right now. And if the Baptists wish to help spread the faith and convert the lost, they may want to focus more on their own backyard, what with their declining numbers.

Or maybe they can't. Maybe they don't know how to solve that. I wonder why?

Being immoral and being a moral pervert

Offhand, I'd define an immoral person as a person who does what is immoral - especially if, in some sense, they realize what they're doing is immoral. A person who lies and who can generally admit, and even in retrospect admit, lying is wrong.

A moral pervert seems like a less-than-ideal name for someone who advocates, as moral, something that's actually immoral or amoral. 'Aborting a healthy child if you're poor is the right thing to do!' That's the cry of a moral pervert. There should be a better word for this, since 'moral pervert' sounds like a pervert who's pretty good most of the time. Wrong idea being conveyed.

Monday, July 4, 2016

LGBT and the Great Civil Rights Comparison

At this point, whenever an LGBT organization bullies a Christian business into providing some service for a ceremony they wanted no part of, the cry is that 'This was settled with the Civil Rights Act! You have to serve blacks and you have to give ME whatever I want!' What isn't appreciated is that this is a great way to make a whole lot of people regard the CRA as a bad idea.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

How the world looks with or without God

Hello there! If you're one of the 4 or 5 people reading this because this article has been linked or referred to here by the ever-desperate-for-attention Skeppy and plagiarist Papalinton, then I've got a treat for you.

I'm going to explain why I pretty well ignore them, despite my demonstrated propensity to get in minor internet shit-arguments with atheists, theists, SJWs, conservatives, and pretty much anyone I stumble across.

Let's start with Linton. Well: he's a known plagiarist. This is beyond dispute, as he's been caught - multiple times! - not just plagiarizing others' words and passing them off as his own, but doing so expressly to cover up the fact that he doesn't know what he's talking about. Let me repeat that, because it's pretty amazing: Linton rants and rages online not only against all things Christian, but against things that he literally *has no understanding of*, that he can't even describe. To cover that up, he will plagiarize from other sources online and then try to change the words so his plagiarism will be covered up. And then he fails, because really - he's incredibly stupid.

Speaking of stupidity, let's move on to Skeppy, aka IM-Stupid, aka IM-Credulous, etc. I'd give you a link demonstrating the many times Skep crossed the line from not just low-intelligence, but flat out into the realm of 'Good God, this guy is literally retarded, like football helmet and eating graham crackers and apple juice daily' mental defect. The link possibilities are considerable. Really, he's done everything like quote as 'expert' and 'authoritative on history' a guy whose geoecities-level webpage was actually some Mystery Babylon conspiracy site. Or the time that he kept insisting that a given author couldn't have meant what everyone else in the thread clearly read him as meaning, until said author literally showed up in the thread to confirm that Skep didn't even have basic reading skills. Oh, the skep-stupidity - it's abundant!

But that's the thing. It's so abundant, all you have to do is google for 'im-skeptical' and read his comment threads. Be sure to check out his time on Feser's blog where he became a laughingstock on the spot. Or you can check out his hall of shame on Dangerous Idea, where he was eventually banned simply for combining stupidity with the sheer volume of his comments. (Skep right now is reading that line and thinking 'That's stupid, you can't hear my comments dummy, they're text.' Like I said - he's a bit of a retard.)  Really, if you want a laugh, give it a whirl.

Anyway, I write all this because it's become necessary, since now and then people show up on here to tell me about the crazy rantings these two are engaged in. The problem is: I did this for years. There is literally nothing there to deal with. They have no content which is interesting, certainly not original, nor are they noteworthy - and they never will be. Atheists find them not worth their time, since there's atheists with actual accomplishments and writing skill to glom onto. Christians generally ignore them, since anything they say is said better elsewhere (remember: we're dealing with plagiarism and stupidity here). They're doomed to a mix of stupidity and obscurity. I've humiliated them enough; they now humiliate themselves without my efforts.

I thank Skep and Linton the opportunity to communicate these truth to the scant few who bother to read their site and who - after seeing the plagiarism of Linton and the stupidity of Skep - may realize that, atheist or no, they really have better things to do with their time. Enjoy, gents. ;)


















Sometimes apologetics comes across to me as bringing a tank to deal with a mugger. It's a tremendous amount of firepower - too much! - but also inadequate for the particular problem, power or not.

To see what I mean, consider this claim: 'The world looks exactly the way it should look if God didn't exist.' I've seen this come up before, more than once, and I suspect it undergirds a lot of people's irreligion or atheism. Intellectually, there's a way to describe it: weak. It's nothing but a subjective claim (not even an argument) with little in the way of intellectual content, little in the way of evidence. Powerful subjectively, but most self-described atheists aren't going to want to stick with it once the subjective, evidence-free aspect is pointed out to them.

But if you try to roll out a formulaic, logical argument against the view, you're generally going to get nowhere. Not because the arguments aren't good at what they do, but because they're just inadequate for this purpose. Kalam or the Five Ways doesn't answer a view like this, and with a view like this in place, many people aren't interested in Kalam or the Five Ways anyway. Nothing short of an explanation of metaphysics and God's role in relation to such will have much of a chance either, and an explanation of metaphysics isn't an apologetics argument at all. It's just information about the fundamental nature of the question to begin with, and why their view is just an intuition about a topic which is a hell of a lot larger than they realize.

Apologists don't seem to 'get' the value of that kind of information, or really the value of a perspective as opposed to a conclusion. It's too long-term, too big-picture. Their goal is to get people to Christ, now. How to lay the groundwork for even taking Christ seriously is an issue they seem to have trouble recognizing at all.

In which What's Wrong With the World discovers What's Wrong With Russia

So, apparently Russia - continuing its war on foreign cultural influence - has decided that they're going to be tightly regulating missionary activity from now on. This has the What's Wrong With the World team up in arms, particularly Lydia McGrew, who complains:
And it is sheer xenophobia of the most blatant sort for Russia to try to outlaw having a foreigner (gasp) speak to a church or religious body without a work permit. Could such a foreigner be an imam recruiting for terrorist activities? Sure, but if that's who he is, and if you have good evidence that he's a terrorist recruiter, then don't let him into the country in the first place. You may notice that t-e-r-r-o-r-i-s-t i-m-a-m is not the same as B-a-p-t-i-s-t m-i-s-s-i-o-n-a-r-y, even if both happen to be foreigners.
The comments section continues this kind of theme, which amounts to 'Russia should conduct itself like a proper Western country! Damn it, we have respect for the 1st Amendment over here! The fact that Russia finds it necessary to try and insulate themselves from western thoughts and culture is downright xenophobic, I tell you!'

Now, I'm Catholic. Byzantine Catholic admittedly, but I'm under the Pope, not the Patriarchs. So in principle I should find any barrier to spreading the faith a worry. What I find remarkable in this exchange here is the lack of sympathy or self-awareness in any form, which is starting to look more and more typical for WWWtW. To them, it's absolutely unthinkable - wicked, horrible, and wrong - that Russia would be highly suspicious of western influence and seem to control or even minimize it. It's totalitarianism in its worst form, they should allow for the free flow of ideas and thoughts and foreign communication in their country!

Look, I'm not saying one has to defend Russia's policy. Go ahead, criticize it - I'm sure some russians will too. But what I find weird - even comical - is that WWWtW's admins will rant and rave about the Russians going out of their way to try and insulate their culture from outside cultural influence, when normally they write article after article about the rapid deterioration of the very culture that Russia is trying to minimize the influence of.

Worse is the strong suggestion that those backwards Russians have a lot to learn about government from their Western Christian counterparts, which more and more looks like a case of a morbidly obese AIDS victim trying to give other people health lectures.

Maybe the Russians have, if nothing else, a reason to be worried, and have a reason to guard themselves against the culture that looks like it won't recognizably exist in a hundred years. Maybe we have something they're right to protect themselves from as much as they can.

Edit: The best part is that if you look at WWWtW's comments, you see a transition. They start off talking about how all these poor missionaries want to do is spread God's word - souls are at stake! And then the whole thing devolves into what kind of secular values the Russians SHOULD have and what their government SHOULD be like and it's high time those damn russkies get with the program. It's hard to imagine why they'd view foreign missionary work as basically a backdoor for entirely secular concerns, right?

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The left wing's tolerance for religion

People like to think of the left wing as necessarily atheistic, just as communism is. What tends to be missed is that the entire perceived problem with religion is largely that it creates a competing influence for leftist political policy: the problem isn't belief in God, it's belief in God which results in authority which differs from that of the state.

If you subvert religious authority and make the religion an extension of the state/the left, leftists generally are quite on board with it all. Insofar as a church can be made ground zero for organizing Black Lives Matter or pro-immigration marches, leftists love the whole 'religion' thing.