Right, Left, Right, Left

Or perhaps we could not march in lockstep.

Yesterday I might sort of have started a fight on facebook. For those of you who are rolling their eyes, no, this is not normal for me.

You see, I actually don’t like to fight. Once the fight is swinging, yeah, I pretty much fit that thing that Foxfier posts about the men of England and all their fights being merry, but that’s not how I look at it before it starts.

There are two factors going into how I’m reacting to thing these days, though. The first – fair warning – is that I seem, at long last to have started the process of menopause. So far no behavioral wobbles, perhaps because I’m used to policing myself the whole time. (You have to, when you feel all drama-y because of something going on in your head pretty much all the time. And that’s called being a writer. And I’ve been one for years.  So I have checks on my behavior and how it fits reality.) The only thing I’ve noticed is that my give-a-d*mn is busted.

In my twenties you could make me cringe and fall in line by saying “you’re acting like a ‘negative stereotype’” and I’d get so scared of being stigmatized as that thing that I’d fall into line immediately. That has been sloughing off a little at a time, and now it’s thoroughly gone.

[This, btw, should serve as warning to the “ladies” in twitterfront (They’re sort of like stormfr*nt upside down, sideways and – somehow even more ignorant. -- Trust me, it takes effort, I once followed a troll from here back to his lair and what those people don’t know of history could fill several very large archives. Note I’m asterisking their name because I’m writing and I don’t need trolls). Anyway ladies – oh, wait, offensive – females – oh, wait, recently considered offensive too, Sluts (it is), take note calling me a fascist will only get me to roll my eyes at you, while calling me a Nazi is roll-on-the-floor funny. Why? Because my political philosophy requires almost no control by the state, beyond the very minimum to ensure the force of contracts and to prevent outright war of all against all. If you think that’s fascism, you really need to study up on fascism. As for Nazi, let’s just say that anyone who poked into my genetic antecedents (with a stick. And acid resistant gloves. Some of my ancestors were not… peaceable precisely) would know any theories of race purity would consider me an abomination.

Why the warning? Well, I haven’t bothered with twitter. I have kids still in the house, four cats, a demanding job. But as I get older and pissier, who knows, I might need another outlet. And you really can’t cage me with epithets because – get this, I know it will be hard for you fluttertwatters – I don’t care what you call me, anymore.]

So, that’s where we stand vis a vis givead*mns.

On top of this for a month now I’ve had eczema all over my arms. It was already pretty bad at Ravencon, but – picture the worst you’ve seen my eczema (and some of you have seen it at cons.) Now make it ten times worse and project it from my shoulders through the end of my fingers. I couldn’t take it anymore, the cream alone wasn’t fighting it, and I found that Benadryl oral does stop it for however many hours. This is allowing the topical cream to get the upper hand so that today I’m proud to announce only one small open wound on my right arm. The whole area is still covered in scales and still itches like hell, but hey, no wounds. Progress.

The price is to spend the whole day in a state of semi-zonk. Which means I’m working on Through Fire, but it’s going VERY slowly.

For some reason “zonk” removes my already lax “giveadamn” barriers.

So yesterday, on FB, finding a meme about the veteran of WWII who escaped a nursing home with his medals, after they told him he couldn’t attend D-Day celebrations, and who, somehow, managed to make it to France in time for the celebrations, I decided to echo it.

A quick click on the picture revealed that it was originally posted by Britain First. There was much handwringing in the comments about how he fought against fascism and now these people were defending fascism and using his picture.

The handwringing was so universal it made me curious. Look, I’ll admit right away I know nothing about British parties. At this point I know next to nothing about Portuguese parties. ONE thing I know, sort of, and that is that in either country there is no equivalent of a small government party. Or the idea that you shouldn’t stick your nose in people’s business. What there are are various flavors of socialist, whose program, depending on how aggressive they are at nationalizing things vs. just making private enterprise do what they want (as our current administration does) spread out on the pink/red/black spectrum from international socialist to national socialist. This doesn’t make them classical left and right so much as it makes them “uh?” To the extent that Britain First is LIKELY TO BE (note that I haven’t studied them beyond a tramp through wicki and some things my fans found) Nationalistic and promote a socialist agenda, they’re probably… unclassifiable. Since I suspect their nationalism is more of the confiscation than the “control private enterprise” form. But if we go on name, they might very well be national and socialist. Does this make them the equivalent of the Nazis?

Oh, hell, no. Nowhere could I find intent to invade Poland, and besides, Putin might get upset, since he has that planned for Wednesday.

Okay – I’ll be serious – nowhere did I find anti-semitism. Their entire program, first and last seems to hinge on getting Islam out of Britain and Islamic influence out of the British manner of life. They don’t even seem to be particularly against Arabs or Immigrants (there’s another party that is that in Britain), they’re just against he culture and the religion. Oh, and they’re very rude and uncouth and say nasty things about Islam and Muslims in public, and also walked in a mosque without taking off their shoes and try to give bibles to Muslims.

This is the stuff of horror, right?

I’ll confess to you that I’d have cringed from the association if I’d been twenty, and if I weren’t completely, fresh, all out of giveadamns.

At fifty one, I thought “Screw that. I like their meme which is about a WWII veteran. They’re not doing anything bad here. And no one is going to donate to them/become committed because they saw this meme.” So I echoed it.

Like clock work, someone half an hour later came to yell at me that I was echoing a meme from a white-supremacist party, and please stop doing that.

At which point I posted what I posted above about Britain First. I also pointed out culture is not race. Being against a culture, or a religion does not make you racist.

She then came back to – I swear I’m not lying – inform me that while okay they might not be racist, but they were a “hate group.”

I hate that designation which seems to mean “anything vile progs don’t like.” I used to post at a libertarian blog (I haven’t for a couple of years due to lack of time, not because I left it) where we were so strongly dedicated to overthinking everything we once got tied up in knots over whether adult incest should be forbidden by law. All of us agreed there were problems with it on the moral front, mind, but did it justify a law.

If you can picture that, you know that such a group not only couldn’t make the trains run on time, it couldn’t even decide whom it should hate, or even mildly dislike.

Well, we got labeled an “hate site” when we said stuff critical of terrorists, and it took us forever to slough it off.

So those words annoyed me. Particularly since what they seem to hate is a philosophy (again, on a very cursory search. I’m not that interested.)

So I started to answer back asking whom did they want killed or interned. Only my fingers have a life of their own. So what I posted was “Do they wish to stone gays? Kill women who marry outside their faith? Kill people not of their religion?”

After which the Huns took over and got delightfully in your face and graphic.

The girl who’d come to scold me didn’t come back. And you sort of have to realize after my answer she ran screaming into the night, sure she’d found a true bonna fide “right wing” and “fascist” nest. Because I was dissing Islam.

Let’s lean back and take a deep breath, shall we? This is what’s technically known as insane.

Words like “racist” and “hate group” and even “fascist” are not discussions. They’re a way to stop discussion and make the opposition run away. And the reason they want us to run away is that – of course – they don’t have a leg to stand on.

Yes, I’m going to be the first to say there are Muslims who never did harm to anyone. To the extent these people are decent, though, they’re not GOOD Muslims. And they know it, and in their heart they feel they should support the Jihad (which is not a spiritual fight, but a very physical one against infidels. You see, when I was fourteen an religiously seeking, I read the Koran. You cannot blow smoke up my orifices.) They might even give money to Jihadi groups.

And the religion itself, which is both religion and civil law, combined, is a horror. Killing anyone who converts out of the faith? Check. Covering women in upholstery better used for sofas? Check (and the first idiot who tells me this means respect for women is going to get punted from on high. It’s one thing for women to cover their hair out of religious belief, another to have it forced on them by civil laws. And it’s another entirely to cover women in a garment that makes it difficult for them to function in public in an industrial society, all in the name of making all women look like blobs, so men who can’t control their lusts won’t be tempted.) Mutilating little girls? Check. Child marriage with older men already with multiple wives? Check. The list goes on and on and on. Anything they don’t specifically approve of seems to be on the list to be stoned.

Look, I’m the first to say one man’s religion is another man’s belly laugh, (well, the second. Heinlein said it first.) and I have friends of a lot of religions I find dotty. But not one of them advocates killing that many people/subgroups.  In fact, none of them, presently, advocates killing anyone.

Islam is, if anything, the living definition of hate group. So, why is it that anyone condemning them is a “hate group” – shouldn’t we fight hate with hate?

Shouldn’t we at least listen to why they object to this group of believers and this group of beliefs? Or is the fact that this religion, in England, is represented by people-who-can-tan an immediate get out of jail free card? And if it is, why? You do realize throughout history brown skinned people have committed just as many abominations as blond, blue eyed bastards, right?

Take Portugal (please. I sell it cheeeeep.) The North was raided by Vikings, the South by Moorish Pirates. I don’t recall either side receiving loving kindness.

But no, the screams of “hate group” and “nazi” and “fascist” makes people skiv off running, for fear they’ll be called that next.

Yes, I’m rolling my eyes.

Let’s peel back a bit of the wrapping around the words. Not all, because that would take forever.

As I said before I know nothing about Britain First. For all I know they paint Hitler mustaches under their noses and goosestep around their local pub saluting every Friday night, before setting fire to a mosque or two.

This is not about them. This is about being called a “fascist” or a “nazi”

Believe it or not “fascist” doesn’t mean anti-communist. Oh, sure communists and fascists squared it off in the Long war of Europe, for who would get supremacy.

The communists won. In words if not on the battle field, which is what’s causing the confusion.

First, communists, like the devil, managed to convince people they don’t exist. “True communism” cannot ever be achieved, and even its lighter form “socialism” is only really socialism if you take over the means of production.

I call it bullshit, and I call it damnable.

It’s true that “true communism” can’t exist in this our present plane, because it would require humans to transform into something different. (The communists in Russia actually expected this. Freed from the pressures of Capitalism, humans would evolve into Homo Sovieticus, who would work perfectly well within communism, and be happy too.) It doesn’t work that way, because it is, really, just a painted-up-version of the ancient tyrannies man has known since it became man. Taken to its final conclusion it generates not the Homo Sovieticus, but an hereditary monarchy. See Cuba, or North Korea.

BUT that’s not how they mean it doesn’t exist. They excuse the 100 million corpses generated by this regime by saying that “this time we’ll do it right.”

As for socialism – national or international – there isn’t a penny difference between outright nationalizing enterprises (what used to be undisguisedly socialism-on-the-way-to-communism. Yes, they called it that) and just controlling them with regulations and government money (which also goes to the cronies of the government, generally, not the “better enterprises.”)

To the extent it is sort of kind of different, it is the difference between China, which is now, in organization, fascist and Cuba which is the closest to a “perfect socialism” we have.

If I had to choose between living in one of them, I’d prefer China. It’s a thin preference, because both regimes are brutal, repressive, capable of dealing death on anyone who has a non-approved thought.

Both are also economically rotten. “Economic fascism” leaves just enough freedom to companies that it decays SLOWER than “economic socialism” but that’s it. I know. I was born in a country that practiced economic fascism (no, they were not Nazis. No, they never allied with Hitler. They were neutral because they were near bankrupt and also because if they’d declared for the Fascists, Franco would have annexed them. If they declared for the Allies, Franco would have invaded them. There really wasn’t any choice but being neutral in WWII, for them.) We weren’t as poor as Cuba, but by the time I came along, we were probably 50 years and perhaps more behind the rest of Europe. And there was no relief in sight.

It’s just fascism goes down the drain SLOWER than socialism/communism (the caveat being dose matters.  the more socialism, the faster the down-the-drain-going.)

So, on that axis, if you take “fascism” as “right” and “socialism” as left, America managed to somehow lose WWII, because there is nowhere in the world a regime that believes in free enterprise and the rights of the individual. Our political idea of “leave us the heck alone to conduct our economic and social life as we please” has no room on that axis. We stand outside it and scratch our heads and go “why would you want either of those?”

The other defining factor in the axis is the one from Nationalism to Internationalism. I’m not going to explain why “Internationalism” is crazy. I know most Europeans grew up being taught nationalism leads to “fascism” and “war.”

This is bullshit and a scar from the time of WWI. Yeah, arguably, the lead up to the war was dressed in nationalism. And anyone who says “We should attack Elbonia because they’re not Kneeans like us” should be told to shut up and go home.

But there is a great difference between that and love and pride for your country. Look at it this way, guys, if you don’t love your country, what country do you love? Your country is the only one you’ll truly know – warts and all – and because it’s the only one you know, and you see the warts, you project onto other countries a level of perfect wonderfulness that doesn’t exist anywhere in the human condition.

This comes prettily from an immigrant, doesn’t it?

Yeah, but guess what? I loved the other country better, so I moved there. I didn’t sit in Portugal running Portugal down and cringing every time someone unfurled the flag. And the reason I moved here was not because I thought America had no warts. (I was raised in Europe, remember? Trust me, they tell us all of America’s warts in history.) It was that the philosophical alignment here suited me better. We might not have free enterprise or individual rights, but we still have the concepts.

Europe doesn’t.

It doesn’t in large part, because four generations have been told that nationalism is the root of all evil, and so they have dopily embraced the “internationalism” that was peddled by… Russia. The thing is if you dig into that “internationalism” it’s not so much that as “Russian Nationalism” where the world becomes one nation and that nation is Russia. (Yes, I say Russia, not the Soviet Union, because in the end, Russia was the motor of that, and Putin is about to rev it up again.)

There is – there can be – no such thing as internationalism. Look, guys, regions of the US are too different to form a “perfect union” despite the same (more or less) language and a shared history to a point. The nations of Europe… Eh. We’re seeing how that is working out. And the nations of the world… well! There isn’t enough in common there to form an international anything.

You really can’t make common cause with a hate group who stones homosexuals, upholsters women, forbids interest rate, and mutilates little girls. It’s not possible. And saying so doesn’t make you a hater, it makes you sane.

So – brings Benadryl addled mind back – refuse to be intimidated by name calling. They can call you “fascist” or “Nazi” or “hater” but that doesn’t change who you are.

If we are to make our way out of this mess we need to discuss what is really behind the words and behind the regimes. For instance, socialism, right or left, hasn’t worked all that well. Maybe we should give free-enterprise a spin. And dopey multiculturalism where we give equal acceptance to every CULTURE for fear of being called “racist” doesn’t work very well, either. For one, it’s bringing back true racism, which is the assumption culture and behavior are genetically inherited.

Perhaps we should go back to the idea that there are things people just SHOULDN’T do, like stoning people for changing their religion. Perhaps we should go back to the idea that even if Islam screams the loudest, and threatens our physical integrity, it really isn’t exempt from the market place of ideas. Distributing bibles to them is not a crime, and not hate. It’s normal in a free society. They distribute pamphlets promoting their religion. (They do it downtown where I live) and no one wants them banned or calls them “haters” for that. (For some of the loony stuff in the pamphlets, like the crazed hatred of gays and uncovered women, sure.)

If they want to live in the west, they have to accept the west’s give and take of ideas. And if they don’t want to do that they can go back whence they came. The west does NOT have the duty to wrap them in cotton wool. They come here, they live like us.

And that, readers, is the sum total of my hating hatey hatred. I think immigrants should adapt to the receiving culture. I’m one. I should know.

And I think we should stop talking in terms of “left” and “right” and instead examine the various economic and social systems and finds what works and what doesn’t.

Yes, I know this makes me a terrible person. Who is now going to load up on caffeine and finish her book, despite Benadryl.

260 responses to “Right, Left, Right, Left

  1. It is so strange that there is only a few of us who realize that Putin is pulling the cord on the Soviet engine. *sigh As for the benedryl– I use it for my extreme allergic response (I had one with the pollen this year). It works, but I feel so lethargic for over 24 hours later. I can’t write in that state so I cross-stitch then. You have my sympathies. Take care of yourself.

    • makes it really hard to write. Interesting I’m not the only one.

      • Benadryl usually makes me too unconscious to actually write.

        • The first day it did that.

          • Now I don’t feel so bad about that. :)

          • WARNING: Toradol isn’t great for writing, either. The jury is still out on Baifen. High doses of Ibuprofen are iffy. Sometimes I can write, but more often I’m in a receptive state that’s about perfect for reading. I managed to dissect Skeleton Man by He-Has-A-Name. Popular mystery writer from about 10-20 years ago. A sort of book with a TON of backstory, handled well. Gee, I don’t need that at all… /sarc

            I hate socialism. We are not ants. The last time I thought this was a bad thing, I was 8 years old.

        • You should have my problem. I don’t sleep for hours after taking benadryl.

        • CombatMissionary

          Dave Barry once advocated self-medicating with alcohol rather than Benadryl when it comes to colds. If I didn’t have a religious objection to that, I might consider it a pragmatic approach. I think his view was, “Now I won’t remember even having a cold problem solved.”
          Maybe this would work for allergies as well? ;)

          • Nope– doesn’t– not in my case :-) Plus many of my meds I take for my disease don’t work well with alcohol.

            • How do you deal with the problem of drug interactions when looking for a decongestant? I am quite sensitive to caffeine and its analogs.

              • I’m pretty sure you can [SearchEngine] Med1 Med2 interaction and get an answer. Look at the URLs for official college, drug company, or medical facility webpages, and avoid WebMD.

              • Sorry- I was not online much yesterday– I use that congestion med Coricidin… but I don’t have the same problem with caffeine (it helps me with migraines). You could talk to the pharmacist (the trained one). He usually knows about drug interactions or look it up for you. That is part of the service he provides btw.

          • Dave Barry is a wise man at times.

          • I don’t drink for religious reasons, also, but I did get some ‘elderberry’ wine one time hoping it would help with the flu (I put elderberry in quotes, because after I’d finished all of it, I read the ingredient label, and discovered there was no elderberry in it, only flavoring). I took half a glass at bedtime, because I was having so much trouble breathing that I couldn’t sleep, and the alcohol must have relaxed the bronchial spasms, because it helped quite a bit. The Bible does say that a LITTLE wine is okay.

            • I *do* drink for religious reasons. I do it as a poke in the eye to all the self-righteous puritans who taught me that dice, cards, alcohol, movies, and women who wore makeup were all from Satan. Now I enjoy life, and trust in G-d according to His word. I’m much better now. :-)

              • Regular small amounts of wine are required for the performance of Jewish religious rituals.

              • Engineer Bob

                My favorite game recently is a card game played with dominoes, invented because some of the Baptists in Texas thought that actual cards were sinful.

                So, now, a few guys sit around and play and drink beer to get together. A good way to celebrate the founding urge.

                (For anyone who cares, the game is Oregon 42. An engineer’s variant of Texas 42.)

        • Yea– first couple of times I had to take Benadry I was unconscious. Since I had a migraine at the time, it was a good thing.

        • Yeah, this is my response to benadryl as well. I had to take it at work once. Happily my boss was understanding. When I stopped being coherent, they let me sleep in the office and someone drove me home when our shift was over.

      • Have you thought of trying Claritin or Zyrtec? (Generics of them are cheap – look for loratadine or cetirizine – they made living with my lovely bride’s cats MUCH more pleasant.)

        • Claritin– or at least the OTC ones are not strong enough in my case.

        • Engineer Bob

          Nasacort has just gone generic. I’m using it for the first time this year, and it has made a wonderful difference with my grass pollen allergies.

          It’s relatively cheap at Costco.

      • Benadryl is also used as a sedative, as most folks are affected to one degree or another. Concomitant usage with anything else with sedative properties will increase the effect.

        Comes a point when operating light machinery (say, a keyboard) is ill-advised. ;)

        • Eh. Actually on day three it’s not that bad. It just seems to remove internal stops, and this actually tends to help my writing.

          • At OTC doses and with no drug interactions, folks usually function fairly well.

            Add something, Tylenol PM or a cough syrup with codeine forex, and your family may find you doing your best impression of comatose with snores.

            Then there’re the outliers, most sedatives have little or no effect on my mom. And I had a buddy in the army who took one OTC dose of benadryl and slept like the dead for 6 hours. In a combat zone during active operations. He declined further doses. :D

  2. Teacher in Tejas

    In the next few years I guarantee you are going to see something that will make most liberals’ heads explode: A Muslim bakery will refuse to do a cake for a gay wedding! Ka-Boom!

    • Nah. The press won’t report it.

      • Teacher in Tejas

        Oh with Breitbart, Hotair, Twitchy etc. the word’ll get out.

        • Rob Crawford

          Doesn’t count. Not “real journalists”.

          • Anybody want to estimate the number of years until “not real journalists” are the new de facto mainstream?

            • Ten. Our parents’ generation will need to pass away first :/

              • With the speed newspaper subscriptions are declining here I’d give paper newspapers in their current form between ten to 20 years.

                And my work is now a lot easier than it was when I started. Besides a lot more subscriptions the papers also used to be a lot thicker. No complaining, although I do hope my job will exist long enough that I can retire from it, my chances of getting something else are not good anymore. :)

                Well, they are moving online, but a lot of people I know check now at least a few online sources if they are really interested in some news. While I don’t know how many check sources with obviously different slants to see if their accounts differ much, one would think that will become more common as it is way easier now than it was when we depended on paper and television for our news. Even people who are not personally interested like being the ones who can offer some new bits in discussions.

                • I just recently declined to renew my weekly newspaper subscription. Thirty years ago there were two papers in town, morning and evening, with at least a bit of difference of opinion. About ten years ago they consolidated into one enterprise. Last year they went from seven days a week to three; Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday. Now they have further trimmed the content, cut back on reader input from a full page to a half column, and shrunk the comics to the point where I must use a glass to read them. Thought it was my eyes so I had them checked. It wasn’t me.
                  I now check something like five separate news sites on a daily basis, knowing full well they are all biases in some form or fashion, but with that knowledge comes the ability to sift some useful information from the dross.

              • Mine are already long dead. Mom passed away in ’78 and Dad in ’91. I do wonder sometimes what my dad would think about today’s situation. I’m glad that he died before Gulf War I.

          • Did you see this news about an “anonymous” social networking app? A way to create and read gossip without knowing who is the source? Just what everyone needed, right? http://www.forbes.com/sites/ewanspence/2014/06/10/shhh-secret-is-quietly-building-a-gossip-engine-for-every-office-and-college-in-the-world/

    • There was one some years back of a Muslim bakery that incorporated human feces into their goods for sale. Yeah, that story didn’t last long either.

  3. The whole thing about the left labeling people like libertarians as “fascists” is only partially because of ignorance. That’s where it started, a poor understanding of what the term meant reinforced by the media terming neo-Nazi groups as “right wing” groups.

    Today, it’s just a way to “win”. Like Sarah said she used to be, many people are terrified of being identified with whatever evil group and will cease whatever activity caused such identification. As communal creatures, it’s hard not to fear being ostracized by other people, and that’s why it’s effective.

    However, it has an effect that many don’t comprehend. The more I’m called a heartless fascist, the less I give a damn. I mean, I know I’m not. I’m a libertarian. I don’t want to feed people into ovens. I don’t want anyone feeding anyone into ovens. I just want to be left the hell alone, and as a result am willing to leave everyone else the hell alone as well. Nothing about that lines up with any fascist party in the history of mankind.

    There’s a reason why Larry Correia has called himself a cismale heteronormative fascist…because two parts of that are true, and the third is so completely off base that he just doesn’t give a shit any longer. I’m right there with him.

    Call me whatever. I will take you to the woodshed over it, but not because I’m bothered. I will do it for my own amusement and the amusement of spectators who know what the term means as well.

    • Teacher in Tejas

      TL: Agreed, funny how the side of the aisle that supposedly cares so much about freedom are the first ones to condemn thought and speech they disagree with (Ah the US college campus, where we want diversity in everything EXCEPT opinion) and go looking for heretics to burn. Or they totally get things wrong. I remember a few years ago when Rob Reiner called likened the Tea Party to Nazis! Yep, nothing says Nazi like a bunch of people who favor smaller government, more freedom and less government control over their lives! Reiner lived up to his most famous character, MEAT-Head!

      • I think the term Nazi is used for anyone who doesn’t support race based “fairness” because if you don’t want to give stuff to people who may not have earned it, the only reason you could possibly have is that you hate brown people.

        Of course, the fact that most of us don’t think brown people need any special consideration, just a fair starting line, is completely irrelevant.

        • Teacher in Tejas

          Yes “Nazi” is like “racist” or “homophobe” all dictionary synonyms for “the act of winning an argument with a liberal.”

          • Orwell summarized it in one of his essays, establishing both that it has long been present and that I am too lazy to provide a link to the actual essay.

            Boiled down to its essence, shortly after WWII the word “Fascist” became stripped of all etymological roots and became a “sophisticated” way of calling somebody a “bog poopyhead.”

      • It is necessary to distinguish between what groups claim they are for and what their actions promulgate. (See Larry Correia’s rant today about the “Miss USA thinks women should learn self-defense” kerfuffle.)

        When those folk claim to be supporting “Freedom” my inner Inigo Montoya always mutters, “you keep using that word …”

        • I haven’t read his rant (looking forward to it, however) but I heard about the “thing”. I was/am really tempted to assume that it’s just really those few tweeters who let the stupid get ahead of their thought process. It’s *so* outrageous that it’s just got to be a couple lone weirdos, right? Right?

          OTOH, it’s part and parcel to the dumb that imagines that the reason that men rape women is that they haven’t been taught not to. (And obviously, a several degree black belt “teacher” isn’t what the crusaders have in mind.)

        • Oooh new post. *opens in new tab*

          And myself, I’m of the opinion of ‘don’t like it? Leave.’ idea for countries and people. Muslims are not entitled to the joys and benefits of living in Australia, or anywhere else in the West and bringing their garbage over here. The idiots who point to the Cronulla riots ignore cheerfully that the Muslims started it by attacking people who weren’t Muslim – or imply that the Australian Whites should not have fought back, because that would be ‘racist’ (and clearly don’t know Australians very well. F*ck that noise!) The imam who said that Australian women should be raped for being scantily clothed, and excused the rapes by Muslim men only encouraged Australians to go “Right then, if that’s how it’s gonna be…” and display how much they did NOT agree with that – and I am very much okay with this. The Islamists made it really suck for the Muslims who did want to integrate and just live peacefully, but the latter could see where the line was drawn.

          But then again, Muslims do have a religious policy of conquest so that doesn’t surprise anyone here.

          I’m really okay with Abbott’s send the ‘economic refugees’ and illegals back policy. I’m okay with the violent reaction which protects this country from becoming like England. I like that here, there will be lines drawn and held and decisions made to not tolerate what shouldn’t be. I wish they laws weren’t so silly about self defense, but I figure that will eventually correct itself, in slow, subtle ways.

    • Remember Huey Long’s predication, back in the day when Fascism was the New, Rising Thing to beat tired old capitalism and democracy. (Along with Communism, which they admitted was the same thing in those days.)

      Someone asked if Fascism could come to America, and he said, yes but it would call itself anti-Fascism.

  4. Well, you are a stronger person than me. I’m afraid the Idon’tgiveadamn has taken over my life.

    • Gary Roulston

      Mine got broke in kindergarten because my best friend was born blind and her best buddy before me was what was then was called a Mongaloid(downs syndrome). Both were sweet people and the girl was the smartest person i ever met. It did not take long for the viscious teasting to stop cause i would crotch kick the other kids for it. Their parrents upon hearing what had been said, whipped their butts for getting me in trrouble.

  5. The “Right” is where people, to varying degrees, are interested in ideas.

    The “Left” abandoned ideas utterly. Now, for them, its about collecting the ‘correct’ list of people to hate.

    • To them, that’s an idea though.

      Maybe it’s me, but it’s amusing how incredibly shortsighted they are. Like this effort to amend the constitution to overrule Citizen’s United. Go ahead and try to limit free speech. Someone will use it against you when they’re the ones calling the shots. Only an idiot thinks their party will rule forever. The American voter is too fickle for that.

      Yet, they still do it. It would be hysterical if it wasn’t so sad.

      • Teacher in Tejas

        that sword cuts both ways too, I remember the creation of the Patriot Act and all the national security changes the GOP Congress and Bush pushed for after 9/11 and I asked several of my conservative friends, “And you guys are going to be ok with this when the Democrats are in charge right?” I’ve always liked that old Spanish proverb, “I Told You so” is a dish best served cold.

        • I said the same thing, so I’m right there with you.

          • Ditto. Because, libertarian, so we’re forever going “My Lord, both sides are DUMB.” Only one side is more venal than the other, really or more invested in stomping on a human face.

            • Agreed. I disagree with my conservative friends on a number of things, but at the end it’s often more a matter of degrees than anything else…most of the time. A lot of them are even seeing the problems with the Patriot Act and such.

              However, my progressive friends? I can’t talk politics with them at all. The fact that I disagree with them is, for them, proof that I’m apparently a horrible human being.

              • I didn’t object to the PATRIOT Act too strongly (a few needed reforms, but buried in a bureaucratic wish list), and I defended it from much of the hyperbole unleashed against it.
                My reasoning was simply that the lengthy list of claimed potential abuses were not authorized or allowed by the text of the bill, and in fact, seemed to have no relation to it at all.

                Fast forward nearly a decade, and we find out that the hyperventilating conspiracy theorists were right.
                There were parts of the bill passed in secret and not released to the general public. And they were every bit the assault on individual liberty as they were claimed to be.
                This irks me. Greatly.
                How the heck is this not the biggest political scandal of the century?
                But the only person I’ve heard ranting about it, is me.

                • There were parts of the bill passed in secret and not released to the general public.

                  That sounds odd. Link to what you mean? (Or, if it’s short enough, I guess you could just post it.)

                  Generally the issues come up either in “regulations” or later amendments/expansions/paper pushers redefining themselves into having ungranted powers.

                  • Yeesh. You know how hard it is to find specific articles about popular subjects months down the road.
                    It came out that portions of the PATRIOT Act were classified during the whole Snowden/NSA kerfluffle. I saw it noted in passing several times in reputable news organs, but never saw much in the way of details.

                    I do know that I read the danged bill back when it was proposed (I had a lot more free time then), and the published text was actually pretty danged innocuous.
                    While the DOJ has “reinterpreted” the hell out of it, you still can’t get to where the NSA is from the text of the bill.

                    There isn’t a whole lot of evidence either way. But there are only really two scenarios.
                    Either the NSA was breaking the law and is boldly lying when claiming that a non-existent “classified law you’re not allowed to see” authorized their behavior. (And getting away with it.)
                    Or there really is a classified law we’re not allowed to see, and it allows their actions.
                    I’ll leave which scenario is more frightening as an exercise in imagination.

                    • The idea that THIS administration had departments lying about following the rules when they were breaking them is quite a bit different than the idea of the Patriot Act having parts that were passed in secret.

                      The NSA did state that their CRITERIA for some aspects of selecting people to be watched when outside of the country were not publicly knowable, but that is actually rather easily argued for.

                    • It looks like in ’11 an Oregon State Senator (Formerly the Rep for the Portland area) claimed that the “real” PATRIOT act was classified, perhaps that’s what you were thinking of? Name is Wyden. (Democrat, although anybody that knows Oregon or Portland probably guessed.)

                    • Anybody who knows Wyden knows he isn’t a Democrat, so much as a whack job. He makes Pelosi look like a thoughtful, logical, moderate.

                    • Oregon and Portland…..

                    • Yeah, I lived in Portland for a while.

                      Then I moved to Austin, and found myself in a very similar situation – the bluest stinkin’ city in an otherwise red state.

                    • Well maybe you can move to Dallas?

                    • Wife’s family is all here in Austin. As is the best job I’ve ever had. But who knows what time and fortune may bring?

                    • Southern California is crazy but Portland is weird!

              • The fact that I disagree with them is, for them, proof that I’m apparently a horrible human being.

                *corrects ‘horrible human being’* to *horrible monster that must be destroyed*

                What? That’s how they really see us.

            • I’m not a libertarian. I’m deeply conservative. Somedays I think it’s a distinction without a difference.

              I’d like to take a decongestant but I’m on so many meds that I don’t think a decongestant would play nicely with my other meds.

              Menopause is a bear but it eventually calms down. Be careful, you may be more susceptible to more diseases after menopause.

              • Depends on the libertarian. There are those who believe in the existence of the Gods of the Copybook Headings. Then there are those who think that a minarchist state is basically the correct way to arrive at the end state Marx described, only by the right route.

              • It’s all messy, Emily. I’m a social conservative who doesn’t believe in using government to enforce my beliefs about morality and behavior on others. And I’m a fiscal libertarian (get off my lawn and out of my checkbook!) who wants a minimal (but effective) federal government, a slightly larger state government, and most stuff to happen at the county and local level.

                • The proper name for someone who does not believe in using government to enforce beliefs about morality and behavior on others is anarchist.

                  Any government at all will enforce beliefs about morality and behavior on others. That is the definition of government. “Thou shalt not murder” is a moral belief and punishing murder is enforcing behavior.

                  This is an important distinction to bear in mind. Remember all the leftists who shriek bile and death threats and call themselves tolerant because they define “intolerance” as what other people do? the same pitfall awaits anyone who defines “moral” as what other people want to make laws about.

                  • The proper name for someone who does not believe in using government to enforce beliefs about morality and behavior on others is anarchist.

                    Not… precisely. In general I find when people are discussing the legislation of morality they’re aiming at a system that strives (note strives, not achieves) for a more objective basis for legal prohibitions that does not rest directly on moral code derived from one particular philosophy or another.

                    Murder is not wrong solely because of the commandment, it is objectively harmful to the greater society and the freedom of individuals. (Seems reasonable to see this as the underpinning of the commandment, as well, but then it’s tied to one philosophy)

                    The problem inherent in the discussion: moral is the word we use to define the systems of behavior and accountability, whatever the philosophical underpinnings. The derived connotation of religious morality clouds the issue, as many people object to the imposition of religious prohibitions from philosophies they don’t follow.

                    We need terminology to clarify the divisions, but in the absence of such terminology, and lacking a broader shared connotation on ‘moral,’ I tend to take people at their apparent connotative meaning and let the denotative confusion slide.

                    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                      IMO too many of the people screaming about the evils of “religious based morality getting into secular law” don’t care about “secular reasons” for the laws. They had the laws and *claim* that the laws are religiously based.

                      Of course, too often those folks are willing to “run other people’s lives” based on their “Secular” beliefs.

                    • Well, yes, there’s always self-centered idiots who graft themselves onto a philosophical discussion so they can spew hate and idiocy. Horrid parasites, them.

                      But, generally I find people who are behaving rationally in other aspects of a discussion don’t dip suddenly into the absurd. (This is, unfortunately, not an absolute. I’ve found myself flabbergasted by the discordant absurd.)

                    • Then there are the eminences who attend TEA Party rallies in order to denounce the racism and, upon finding no racism in evidence, act racist to reveal what they know to be concealed there.

                      You often see similar behaviour by internet trolls, joining a discussion and blowing their dog whistles in hopes of discrediting the position they oppose and driving away reasonable people who might otherwise listen to what is being said. Such agents provocateurs often remind me of an old joke about all the attendees of a Triple-K rally being undercover cops, FBI agents and representatives of the SPLC and NAACP.

                    • Speaking of wanna-be agents provocateurs, ran into a small group of them at a local tea party rally back a few years ago when I was more likely to show up at a tea party rally. The kid holding the worst sign had the decency to at least look kind of embarrassed about it, and we kindly, politely, but firmly indicated that such was not welcome at that event.

                      If they cannot show that those who believe in smaller government, more individual freedom and more individual responsibility are evil, then by george, they will MAKE us so. Or at least make us appear to be so.

                      Or at least try.

                    • “Murder is not wrong solely because of the commandment, it is objectively harmful to the greater society and the freedom of individuals”

                      That is a moral judgment right there.

                    • Which. is. the. point.

                    • Please forgive terminological inaccuracies, but it has been over forty years since I studied on such things. Basic Sociology 101 recognizes that a culture has a moral hierarchy: customs, mores, laws and taboos. To discuss a society absent morality is impossible — a society is defined by its root morality.

                      The problem of contempibleorary intellectualism is the failure to recognise that a multicultural society is a contradiction in terms, semantic games attempting to discredit your moral views aside.

                      Yes, any actions which are prone to being destructive of a Culture’s ability to propagate itself and maintain good conditions for a majority of its members is evolutionarily unsound. For this reason I advocate that each member of Society be permitted one (only one, non-transferable) murder, the benefits of such a policy being self-evident.

                    • To discuss a society absent morality is impossible — a society is defined by its root morality.

                      Agreed. My noted problem being, morality has become conflated with religion or religious philosophy in popular discourse. It’s inaccurate, and makes the discussion difficult, but it’s still there.

                      Using pedantry to disregard someone’s arguments about the proper role of government in society and human affairs does not make the discussion less difficult.

                      Which is why I was perhaps unnecessarily terse in my response to Mary.

                    • Uh, well, yeah — some people want us to think that morality only originates from religious belief when in actuality it is the other way around.

                    • No argument.

                    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                      Res, I’m not sure what you’re saying here. Are you saying “religious belief only comes from Morality”?

                    • More or less — it is not a fully developed insight*, but religious belief, as anything more than an individual creed, arises from a shared moral perspective. It might derive from recognition of a Creator (although, formally, it was the delivery of the Torah that formally created a Jewish people) or from following the lessons of a moral teacher (e.g., Yeshuah, Siddhārtha or even Marcus Aurelius — not all moral philosophy is religious) or of a prophet (name your own, I can think of several and don’t want to initiate any side fights.) But the essence of religion is that it is a social organization, therefore it would seem to require a communal moral view ab initio, as prerequisite.

                      *Frankly, I was hoping nobody would ask about that, or, in asking, offer an answer. ;-)

                    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                      I don’t agree that the “essence of religion is that it is a social organization” is correct. I see religion as much more than a social organization.

                      On the other hand, it’s not a major disagreement.

                      On the gripping hand, the relationship between morality and religion may be a “which comes first, the chicken or the egg” situation. [Smile]

                    • Not really worth arguing about … which has not been much of a deterrent ere now, eh?

                      Religion = Social Organization in that it perforce involves more than one person. It might be possible to have a one person religion, but if so it hardly merits debate. It might not involve very much organization (insert name of Church of your choice) but it at a minimum requires some agreement that the third person has gotten it all wrong.

                      Chicken/egg? You can have a moral philosophy without having a religion. I can’t think of any religion lacking a moral philosophy (insert snarky reference of choice, disrespecting whichever religious group amuses you.)

                    • Hurm. Religion follows morality…

                      That rings true. Don’t know if it does to anyone else, but that raises some very interesting thoughts about what religion IS and WHY it exists.

                      I mean, the first thing one has to recognize to have a religion is not JUST the existence of divinity (Or God, or a Creator, or a Universal Force, or The Old Ones), but the judgment that said divinity is someone who should be worshiped. That is, that this divinity is worthy of our devotion for whatever reason (does He promise salvation? Or does He make the rains come? Does He smite our enemies with a mighty hammer?) The reason you give for worship necessarily depends first on a sense of the relationship you have with the divinity in question, and that’s at least somewhat informed by a sense of morality that predates your awareness of / relationship with said Deity.

                      Maybe. This is going to take a lot more noodling, but it’s a very interesting statement.

                    • The essence of religion is the worship of a divinity. Everything else is added onto that basic.

                • I pretty much agree with all your points except that we to maintain our military. I’m not an imperialist, but I think that our ability to project force anywhere in the world is vital to the safety of many countries besides our own. I think a 600 ship navy is a good idea and that we should go back to the standard of being able to fight 2.5 wars simultaneously. I think that women shouldn’t be in combat and certainly NOT in the infantry. Also I think that soldiers should be able to be armed on base.

                  We shouldn’t harass everyone at the airport but profile instead.

                  • I agree on military. Not because of the other countries, but because the richer we are, the more we’ll be envied.

                    • A strong America is a check to Russia and China. I’d like to be able to honestly claim “no better ally, no worse enemy.”

                    • Was it Heinlein who said “A second-rate military is the most expensive military”?

                      We should have a sufficiently powerful military that nobody even thinks of starting trouble with us. A demonstrated ability and willingness to use disproportionate force is the surest way to ensure we only need use proportionate force.

                      I believe in the Reagan Doctrine on use of force: make sure the other guy thinks “Don’t eff with him, he’s crazy.”

                    • William O. B'Livion

                      Res:

                      The problem is that many of the sorts who would attack us don’t think the same way we do.

                      Or they do, and by having a super strong military they just move to attack us in places we’re weaker, like our cultural institutions.

        • William O. B'Livion

          The first two patriot acts, while morally questionable, at least had the benefit of built in sunsets. This says “Well, we think this is a good idea, but let’s check back in 5 years”.

          Now we have a boot, stomping on the face, forever.

    • William O. B'Livion

      That is absolutely not true at all, and is a dangerous statement.

      There *are* many supporters of leftists who are utterly bereft of ideas, this is true. And they are utterly disinterested in any discussion of ideas or anything.

      There are just as many who gather under the banner of “conservatism” who last had an original idea sometime before the waters and the firmament were separated (or however the story goes). These are the “Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve” types, the My Bible (or rather the bloke who reads my bible to me) Says types (note, not the “Well, in my religion we believe because two thousand years of arguments and discussions and there’s the pile over ->there if you wanna dig through all of them yourself. There is a difference there).

      The “Left” has ideas that are *wrong*, and when and where possible need to be refuted. Unfortunately the “Where” is on college campuses and the “when” was the1970s and 80s. By the 1990s it was already entrenched (I got hassled more than once for simply demanding that a professor show their work, much less try to prove them wrong).

      It is also true that the left is mostly recycling ideas from the last 150 years, but really other than “live and let live” how much of pure libertarianism isn’t basically Adam Smith, Eugene Spooner et. al?

  6. Dang! Did I miss another good fight?

    I’m currently zoned out on everything under the sun, fighting a cold. I’ve noticed I’m putting snippy comments into threads I usually have sense enough to avoid, so I’m blaming the meds. They also get the blame for the stalled writing. I need to write a magical battle, which is tough when all I want to do is sleep _and_ breathe at the same time.

    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

      I went to Sarah’s Facebook but it wasn’t much of a fight. The poor dear posted twice and didn’t post again. I do wonder what she said on her Facebook about it but not enough to “friend” her to find out.

      Oh, good luck fighting that cold. [Smile]

      • Teacher in Tejas

        I too went back and looked at that post. That was an epic beatdown by Ms. Hoyt et. al. Not a single response after “uh…………..yeah…………uh…..they’re still a hate group.” Well done.

      • Oh, no, it wasn’t a fight, but I know what she ran away thinking…

        • I shared that same picture after you, but my posts are restricted to friends so I suppose it’s not likely I’ll get any of those. Well, I do have some friends who are quite liberal (in the American meaning of that word), but probably unlikely anyway. :)

  7. I remember reading about a joke that circulated in occupied Germany just after WWII: “Stalin defines ‘fascist’ as anyone putting the good of their country over that of the Soviet Union.”

    • They still are shilling for him when they say that Fascism is left-wing.

      • BobtheRegisterredFool

        Did you mean to write right wing instead? Do you think my ‘Confederates were leftists’ argument is BS?

        • Oops. yes. “Hitler is right-wing” is a Stalinist line.

        • Yes, I think your “Confederates were Leftists” argument is BS.

          First, the Confederates were openly fighting in defense of an aristocracy.
          Second, the Confederates were openly fighting for the decentralization of power.
          Third, Southern Planters were very oriented towards land ownership being the most important means of production.
          Fourth, the Confederates were fighting in defense of a societal order that predated the French Revolution, and its attendant genesis of the Left/Right breakdown. In which, the Left was actively hostile to any concept of aristocracy. And used Thomas Paine’s The Rights of Man as their polestar. (Square that with a defense of slavery, if you please.) They weren’t terribly fond of decentralization of power, either.
          Fifth, Das Kapital and A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy (and the attendant re-ordering of the Left/Right divide) weren’t published until well after the American Civil War was over.
          Sixth, the First International was created in 1864. In Europe. As the vanguard of modern Leftism. The ACW officially started in 1861, and had simmered a while before then.

          I see the syllogism you’re trying to create, but it just doesn’t jive with reality.

  8. Is it just me, or do the SJWs tend to use “rage” to describe their own hatreds? Hate is evil, and they cannot be evil. Rage is righteous (when directed at the right people). Calling it “rage” becomes a sort of self-flattery.

    • Teacher in Tejas

      SJW???? Can I have a definition please. :-)

    • That’s interesting. I’ve always thought of rage as uncontrolled(uncontrollable?) anger. Anger, in the form of indignation (and typically over what has happened to another) can certainly be righteous, but rage? If your anger is in control, you’re far more likely to do something you’ll regret than otherwise.

      • Possibly I’m confusing wrath with rage as far as “righteousness” goes, but it just seems to me I’m seeing word rage being used more often on the other side of the aisle. Nothing I could point to, though I’ll try to note where for future reference.

        • Oh, I expect you’re right on usage. Rage has been diluted in recent years. Berserkers rage. Libprogs … are vexed? Worked up? Not sure.

          • The word you are looking for (and will become intimately familiar with over the next couple years) is tantrummy.

            • Nope. I mean, yes: that’s the correct term. My offspring are allowed one tantrum. Each. Not entirely certain how to implement that policy, but it is The Plan. For now. (The Plan is a highly fluid and “living” document, flexible and malleable at the behest of The Dad (NB: The Mom is likely to change The Dad’s mind at a moment’s notice. Whether he likes it or not.)) My spawn will not be “tantrummy.”

              • I recommend revising The Plan, instantly! Offspring, advised that they are only permitted one tantrum may opt to tantrum over The Plan. Said tantrum may last several years, delivered in multiple installments.

                Best advice I can give on tantrums is to recognize that they are like a pulled muscle: only truly harmful if you fail to make appropriate allowances and bound to be alleviated by time and rest.

                You and Their Mother might as well start now developing a scoring system for proper evaluation of tantrums, complete with cards to be raised (remember — always throw out the East German judge’s score) to properly recognize the quality of the tantrum. Factors to be considered include volume, duration, inventiveness in throwing oneself about, and situational awareness.

                • BEST tantrum stopper, ever — I flung myself on the floor alongside Robert and imitated his action. It was his last tantrum.

                  • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                    What was the expression on his face when you did that? [Grin]

                  • ^^^THIS.
                    This will happen. Likely once with each child. Who knows, maybe we can make a family thing of it. Each time the new kid does it, we ALL do it with. That could be entertaining.

                    • Wait til he hits the “NO!” stage. Saying “no!” back at him–with every tone of voice and exaggerated expression you can think of–can be quite fun.

                  • SheSellsSeashells

                    My moment of maternal pride (and the child’s last tantrum) was, mid-bookstore, “Wow, that’s really good stomping. You could probably do it better on your *feet*… ooh, that IS louder. Can you stomp to the door? Can you stomp to the parking lot?” The screaming died down somewhere between bookshelf and door. :)

                    • Mine were too hardheaded. Everything like that that we did just made them throw a harder fit.

                      Eventually, they grew out of it, but it certainly got trying at times.

                • While I prefer Sarah’s approach as detailed nearby, I expect Mrs. Dave will critique the performance. I imagine between the two of us, we can encourage more civilized behavior.

                  • BTW — I strongly recommend adopting a “no whining” policy, strictly enforced, of “If you whine for it it will not be given, even if we had already planned on getting it for you.”

                    The USA would be a far better place were this rule universally enforced on children.

  9. What I’m not clear about is how you justified linking to the Gaurdian. :)

    (Note: there are people in this world who can mock the G’s copyediting issues with a clear concience. Not me. It’s still funny as hell, because they are a major newspaper and I am not.)

  10. Back at Flat State U I left a well meaning and very ignorant young lady with the Muslim student group dazed and confused after she tried to interest me in some of their materials. “No thank you. I’ve read the Koran. I know what it says about those of us whom All@h wills to remain unbelievers.” Apparently she’d never read that far (if at all).

    Some weeks later I upset a warm-n-fuzzy friend by pointing out the vast difference between what the shiny pamphlets claimed and what happened in Muslim-governed areas, and quoted both the Koran and hadiths. I didn’t bother pointing out that the group handing out the nice materials happened to be Muslim Brotherhood. *sigh* She meant well, but she’s one of those who tries so hard to be accepting and understanding that she doesn’t hear the bus until after it runs her over.

    • Teacher in Tejas

      It comes down to this. Most conservatives/libertarians see the world as it is, Most liberals live in the fantasy land of “The world is really as they would really, really, really like it to be” hence the repeated attempts at socialism, communism and “Well it could work if the right people (i.e. US) are in charge.” And its that side of the aisle that always looks to hammer in the bent nail and start the trains to the “re-education camps” or the trains to, shall we say, worse alternatives. I have seen comments by former students on Facebook that are truly frightening. “We need to get enough of a majority so we can outlaw the Republican Party for ever.” “Man, if we could just get rid of all those obstructionists.” No Christian should ever be allowed to hold political office in this country.” And the funny thing is, in the next breath they talk about how much they hate the intolerant and facist right.

      • I foolishly thought that the proper reply to a Facebook post of “look how much these open carry proponents in America look like these gangs in Libya” was to quote Libya’s total ban on private small arms, which should make people realize just how huge is the disconnect between what laws are intended to do and what they actually do. Pointing out that the countries with the strictest gun control in the world also have a tendency to be hell-holes isn’t exactly the best pro-gun-control evidence, right?

        Instead I got a wistful reply like “if only they were able to enforce it”. So apparently liberals can still be capable of recognizing that totalitarian government is both a prerequisite for and a consequence of gun control; they just don’t recognize that as a bad thing…

      • They truly don’t see their own intolerance, and they never question themselves or their assumptions.

        After all, if you question yourself about your attitudes and tolerances, you may not like the answer and you’d have to change your way of thinking – and that might render you unpopular to those you hang out with.

        Better to just pretend that it’s the people you hate that are the problem…

        • Hence the coining of the term “useful idiots.”

          They think they are leaders when all they will be are judas goats.

        • They define intolerance as not tolerating what they think tolerable.

    • Some very nice people have nothing but wool between their ears. Is Flat State U UT?

  11. “shouldn’t we fight hate with hate?”

    Well, no. Hate is an ends justify the means sort of method. Truth in charity is a better weapon.

    • Yes, but when speaking out against anything is called “hate”… well?
      Mind you, I do not advocate hating PEOPLE. I do advocate hating a hateful philosophy.

      • Well, I think you generally do it right by calling them on the dirty habit if shutting down conversations they don’t like.
        The righteous anger of hating a hateful philosophy feels good at the moment. But in practice it’s impossible to completely divide philosophy from the person espousing the philosophy. I know. Occasionally I run across someone who insists that Limbo is authentic doctrine instead of the Calvinistic bit of hogwash that it is… and the resulting interpersonal interaction is never pretty.

        • How Calvinistic? Predestination-wise?

          • The Catholic Encyclopedia (probably out of date) says the Catholic Church revisited the idea of limbo, or at least of a not-too-bad place for the souls of unbaptized babies, after the Jansenists picked up and sort-of-popularized Calvin’s double-predestination teachings. Wiki says current Catholic doctrine does not support a limbo per se, but trusts to the mercy of G-d to see to those who die before being able to be baptized but who have not committed a personal sin (as opposed to coming under Original Sin). It all goes back to Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas, among others.

            • The Augustine/Aquinas angle, I knew. Having read the relevant passage of Aquinas, I think the Holy Doctor may have been reaching. I’m not conversant with the theological difference (in terms of effect on the sinner) between personal/Orginal sin.

              • Not being that deep in the theology (yet. I’m supposed to come up with four lessons on predestination and fate for August), I think it has to do with people who are not yet capable of committing a sin (newborns) but who are still caught up in original sin. If an individual has not yet sinned of their own volition but dies without baptism, do they have to go to hell, or is there a less-nasty alternative, since without baptism there is no access to salvation, even if the individual never had the chance to sin. *rubs forehead* This is why I try to stay away from hard-core theological debate.

                And now I think I need to go take an aspirin and read something simple, like Tolkien’s notes on the Old English grammar in Beowulf.

                • In answer to your Q (_my_ answer, not necessarily God’s), being guilty only of Original sin, they stay in a waiting area, until the end of time. Alternatively, they go straight to Heaven. They haven’t sinned otherwise, and never had the chance to “earn” redemption. A loving God wouldn’t punish them for that.

                • . If an individual has not yet sinned of their own volition but dies without baptism, do they have to go to hell, or is there a less-nasty alternative, since without baptism there is no access to salvation, even if the individual never had the chance to sin.

                  Hey, a thought– we know that the Big Goods from before Christ are in heaven (so much so that a couple of them even showed up to vouch for Him– remember the mountaintop and Peter wanting to set up the tents?) so it’s possible to be saved without baptism if there was no possible way for you to be baptized.

                  Yeah, this is usually where I just go “God will take care of it. He’s kinda smart like that.”

                  • There are also all those old testament passages about ‘so and so loved/obeyed the Lord and it was counted to him as righteousness.’ To me this is a pretty heavy indication that God was always taking care of it. There are a couple of other passages I need to find before citing, but the above was practically a refrain in various forms.

                    • Could they be sent to the Jewish Heaven? No need for baptism there. There is a section for Righteous Gentiles.

                • Note that this is something that I haven’t given a lot of in depth study to, it was just something I grew up ‘knowing.’ Which means that it is probably a fairly common Protestant belief, at least it is in the varieties I was influenced by growing up. That is that those incapable of making their own decisions (not just newborns, but those too young to make their own decisions, also to include the severely mentally handicapped, etc.) would go to heaven. Remember all the passages where God states that the children are his.

                  Where I have most often heard limbo or some other less nasty than hell place, advocated, is in a debate on where those people who have never heard of Christ go. You want a headache inducing argument, you ought to listen to one some time about where the aborigines of Papa New Guinea who have never been told about Christ go. I listened to one such where one person insisted they went to heaven, another insisted they went to hell, another posited a limbo-like destination, while at least one believed that their destination depended on how they had lived their life, in the absence of the knowledge of Christ. I have even heard a belief in reincarnation professed in such arguments.

            • I have heard the observation that we don’t know — and perhaps this is because it is best for us not to know.

    • Also, if you’re hating, you’re probably not thinking clearly enough to create and carry out an effective battle plan :-)

    • The Other Sean

      Nah, we should fight hate with polearms.

    • Truth in charity is a better weapon.

      Except that’ll just get you accused of hatred, or– if they’re nice– being “critical,” nasty, condescending, treating them like a child…..

      Often the folks who talk the most about charity are all too willing to assume waaaaaaaay far out there bad motives and readings-in.

      • Nothing will avoid accusations. They will invent reasons if they have to. It’s best to treat them as you would treat getting wet if you were caught out in the open in a cloudburst. Gonna happen, don’t fret too much about it.

  12. I don’t believe Islam is the living definition of a hate group anymore than I believe intersectional racist and sexist radical feminists define feminism. There are 1.5 billion Muslims in the world and they are not a single person. Defining Islam as a hate group might be a little strong language since its culture and custom can vary widely. Head scarves and other clothing are by no means universal in Islam and many if not most women do it by choice. Neither is mutilation universal or even Islamic.

    However, there is little doubt the closest thing to a “misogynist patriarchy” that exists in the world is not in the West but under Islam. What Islam sees as the “lure” of a woman to a man and how women comport themselves is completely different than in the West but also varies widely within Islam insofar as how a woman’s movements are circumscribed. The most strict form we know is the old Persian version of “purdah,” where women were always veiled except to family members, and mostly kept inside. That’s gone now (with some few holdouts in, for example, Afghanistan) but in Iran women still can’t attend soccer matches and although it is not against the law for women to drive alone in S. Arabia it IS against cultural practice.

    We must separate bad people from “people.” One can certainly make the argument that many Muslims are good people living under bad institutions, but those institutions vary considerably by nation and even region. It is perhaps true that, generally speaking, Islam as an institution is not tolerant and may be seen to be demonstrably supremacist when in close contact with minority religions under its control or even when Islam is the minority.

    Still, with that many people I would hasten to make distinctions between the criminal and the innocent and anomaly and institution. Generally speaking I’d say it’s true Islam doesn’t play well with others. Probably the key to this entire argument is in Islam itself adopting a more live and let live attitude in its orthodoxy. Whether that is possible or not I don’t know, but it is certainly where the thrust of this debate should be centered, and perhaps that type of reform can only come from within Islam.

    Islam does not exist independent of the people who are its members, and in the past there has been push back via Shi’ite and Sufi and Wahhabis who have reoriented their own main thrust of Islam. If that can be done then perhaps a more conciliatory attitude can emerge. It’s certainly unlikely to emerge from the S. Arabian Wahhabi Sunni orthodoxy which, with Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Qutbism, is the main driver in the more radical anti-Western notions of Islam. It should be noted the Egyptians have almost completely rejected the Muslim Brotherhood in its own home base.

    I don’t believe Islam defaults to radical or terrorism, but like anything else in this world, neither should it be immune to criticism if we so choose. Instead of assuming the worst of a Western Muslim, I might start by asking what their favorite sports team is and move on from there, and oh, by the way, how about some tea? I believe only a tiny minority of Muslims world-wide support Islamic Jihad/evangelism outside their home nations. Britain should of course have the right to defend it’s own indigenous culture the same way everyone else does. That double standard for the West doesn’t fly with me. If the UK needs diversity, so does Africa.

    • 1.6 billion Muslims in the world, now. And according to Pew polling, at least 300 million of them believe that the punishment for converting away from Islam should be the death penalty. Not a majority belief (except in Afghanistan, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Palestinian territories…) but not exactly “tiny” either.

    • So long as the Koran cannot be reinterpreted, and so long as the Gates of Inquiry remain closed (were declared closed in the mid 1100s), those Muslims who want to adapt Islam to better deal with the rest of the world will be considered dangerously misguided at best. When your scripture is the literal Word of All@h, given to man straight from All@h’s own original copy, never to be changed, eternally perfect, never to be questioned, it’s mighty hard to argue for new interpretations. Add people who firmly believe that the world’s gone downhill since the death of the Prophet, and if it didn’t exist in 620 no one needs it, and it’s going to take more than Muhammed Luther nailing 99 theses to the door of the Al Aqsa Mosque to get major changes started.

      • Fail Burton

        In fact there are thousands of hadiths that interpret the sayings of Muhammad and legions of scholars who make them and argue over them. And it wouldn’t be Al Aqsa but Al-Ahzar University in Cairo, and actually, what they say would be a start, since they are the font of Sunni orthodoxy.

    • If I give a friend a ride and we stop at a gas station along the way for him to get a drink, and while inside he decides to hold the gas station up and kills the clerk before coming out, I am an accomplice to felony armed robbery, armed criminal action, and homicide (at a minimum) – even if I had ZERO idea that what transpired was going to. If I drive off with him in the car/do nothing to stop the event/do not turn him in, I will be tried, and most likely, convicted of the same crimes that he committed, even though I was an innocent bystander, at least up until the point he came running out and jumped in the car screaming for me to drive.

      By sitting by and doing nothing, saying nothing, condemning none of the actions of their fellow Muslims, are they not willing accomplices? Where are the Imams decrying terrorism and the radical Muslims? Where are the Imams decrying the calls for the destruction of Israel and the US? Where are the calls for the rights and freedoms for Christian, Jew, Satanist, Agnostic, Atheist, Wiccan, or any other religion in the Muslim world?

      As in my example of my theoretical friend robbing the gas station, if Islam wants to be found not guilty, Muslims must stand up and do SOMETHING to show that they are not in agreement with what has been done in the name of of their religion. Silence is not dissent.

      As Sarah pointed out, and from my admittedly limited knowledge of the actual wording of the foundational text of the religion, if a believer were to stand up and rail against what has been wrought by Muslims, they would not be a “good” Muslim as defined by that very text.

      • Fail Burton

        That’s legal pedantry. You know as well as I that’s no universal measure of being an accomplice. I’m not responsible for Timothy McVeigh. Muslims are not responsible for terrorists. This is the same argument feminists are using to attach me to the insane Elliot Rodger. And there were plenty of imams preaching against the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, and guess what: Morsi’s still in jail and someone else is now president. And a billion and a half people aren’t guilty of anything.

      • Odd, now I think on it, how many of the “Not In My Name” opponents to Bush’s War failed to notice an absence of a comparable “Not In Our Name” group on the other side. Indeed, many many Muslims (most notably the Palestinians) cheered the attack.

        It should not be necessary to assert that this does not constitute an endorsement of attacking all such (indeed, it says much that such a disclaimer might be in order) coreligionists, merely that one cannot help but wonder whether their dedication to Peace is instrumental, not objective.

        • Fail Burton

          I think we already know there is nothing like a Constitution over there nor do they think like that. Palestinians are for themselves because they are a culture that has no use for tools of self-criticism that might find them wrong. Like radical feminists and men, Palestinians are never wrong when it comes to Israel. Their narrative of the last 60 years is an absence of critical thought.

      • Where are the calls for the rights and freedoms for Christian[s]…?

        See Pakistan, following a bombing of a Christian church in Peshawar a large group of Muslims and Christians surrounded a Christian church in Lahore, intent on stopping another such attack while their fellow citizens practiced their faith. And declaring their unity in opposition to such acts.

        It happens, many oppose the actions and barbarity of radicals, and dismissing an entire people for the reprehensible acts of a few is rife with dangers.

        Hold people responsible for what they believe, and what they support. But assuming tacit support because you haven’t heard somebody denounce it…

        As Fail notes, that logic is used to brand the innocent daily, I’d rather not participate.

      • Err — actually, you aren’t. If you had no idea, you were not guilty. Witness the failure of the attempt to railroad Moezeldin Elmostafa so that he could not testify in the Duke Lacrosse rape hoax. He unquestionably took a woman home from shoplifting, but he was easily acquitted. (Having wisely asked for a bench trial.)

    • Very informative thanks, and I tend to agree, grudgingly. My problem is that you never see vocal Muslims condemning violent acts or words by other Muslims. It might exist and the media is just not showing it, but so far I’ve only seen a few cases where a community leader gives a speech denouncing something and state that Islam is not a religion of hate, etc., but other than that, nothing.

      I’ve had friends who are Muslim. They don’t pray regularly, though they adhere to religious holidays, and I doubt they’ve even read the Koran, and really, they are humble nice people. It’s because of them that I don’t want to generalize.

      And yet, there’s no denying that whenever something explodes somewhere in the world, our default assumption is that it must have been Muslims.

      Look at the reaction to that Danish cartoonist who drew a caricature of Allah. You get the sense that people are starting to sensor themselves, and we are told to be careful, lest we offend followers of Islam. There is no denying that they do have some kind of hold on Western society:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Innocence_of_Muslims

      or

      http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/youtube-to-remove-katy-perry-s-dark-horse-video-depicting-name-of-god-allah-youtube-to-remove-katy-perry-s-video-dark-horse-from-their-website

      Just a few examples. I’m sure there are a lot more. I’m Christian, a little bit confused, but still a Christian, and yes, I don’t like it when people ridicule my faith, but do we get the above kind of reaction when Christians complain about blasphemy or whatever offense they see on TV or on a video? No, you get ridiculed even more. I suppose if there were more violent outbursts, then the media might be more careful, and that is my point (I don’t condone violence, just using it as an example).

      Am I wrong?

      • Fail Burton

        Well, I think you’re correct there’s a double standard and you’re obviously correct as to part of why – the threat of violence.

        I think you already understand the source and other part of the double standard: guilt tripping the white West by sociopathic ideologues who hyper-identify with who they see as history’s second-place finishers – non-whites, gays and women.

        The mechanism is basically the same as with the intersectional QUILTBAG barnstormers in SFF: sociopathic bigots, naive well-meaning do-gooders, and opportunistic authors who act the role a politician would.

        In fact there are Muslim who speak out against radicalism, but if you’re not in that nation or reading certain media you might not see it.

        It’s true terrorism usually defaults to Muslims (and rightly so) but that’s different from saying Muslims default to terrorism. I don’t really see where you’re wrong about anything, buddy. The Danish cartoon, South Park and the Katy Perry thing are all moronic.

      • For Muslims condemning the actions of their own, I can think of at least one example: the Mumbai attack, especially regards to the Hassidic Jewish hostel. The hostel was located in a predominantly Muslim neighborhood, and the family was well loved. The response of the Muslim community in the wake of the attacks was to refuse to allow the terrorists to be buried in a Muslim cemetery, saying that the madness of the Middle East had nothing to do with them, and they did not want to be dragged into it. (Largely true; Islam in India has had more of a fight with the local religions, such as Hinduism and Buddhism.) As far as I am aware, and I may be mistaken, the terrorists are not buried in Muslim-sacred soil until now.

        The Middle East idiocies and atrocities regarding Islam VS Judeo-Christian groups is the most commonly known, thus the reason why the ‘Social Justice’ twits think “white religion (Judeo-Christian groups) VS poor oppressed brown religious group” even though they’re all the same color over there.

        The stuff going on in the Asiatic regions regarding the Rohingya Muslims is another good example of different ethnic-religious groups clashing (and because they’re largely ‘brown on brown, no Christians involved, you don’t hear much about it in Western media). I’ve seen Western news groups basically paint the Rohingya Muslims as victims, poor outcasts and must be declared refugees, because they gloss over that the group have been such total twatwads in the region that even other predominantly Muslim countries have refused to take them in. The Roh-Muslims (I’m tired of typing out the proper name) have been, as a group, systematically trying to drive out and destroy their Buddhist neighbors, in many cases literally. There have been (quickly buried) news stories of Roh-Muslims setting fire to their own houses in the hope of destroying the houses of their Buddhist neighbors. When the wind failed to be so obliging, they went crying to the Western bleeding hearts, wailing about how the Buddhists destroyed their homes, they were now homeless and penniless, oh please send money!

        When the Buddhists also decided they had enough, they rampaged through their tormentors’ neighborhoods and drove a lot of them out into the sea, where the Roh-Muslims fled on boats, hoping to find refuge in the neighboring largely Muslim nations (and India), they found themselves turned away (I think Bangladesh?) because they basically did not want such troublemakers on their soil.

        I know there’s an advocacy group in Sydney trying to petition that they be allowed in to Australia, because oh, poor them, they’ve been ignored by the rest of the world. With Tony Abbott, I’m thinking the chances of this are slim (especially with the success of sending the illegals back and refusing to allow any of them to get to Australian soil.

        • I’ve actually heard some of it, and it truly is almost everywhere an issue, even Africa. Thanks for educating me.

          • I linked an article up in a different thread where Britain has to legislate teaching of British values because schools were being used to push Islamic values, gender segregation and contempt for non-Muslims. Yep, that’s what happens when the value of the other is higher than the self! Someone actually might take them up on it!

            • Thanks. I used to get really angry when I read things like this. What I find frustrating is people’s inability to see what is going on, or their willful ignorance of it. If you took the time to stay informed on what is happening out there, you’d see a trend, and it ain’t painting a rosy future.

      • I don’t think it’s so much a generic threat of violence that stop media criticism of Islam. It’s the direct death threats to the particular reporter that is stopping it.

  13. We saw this coming when ‘hate speech’ was introduced as a concept. Many people called it out, too many more went along.

    When things have progressed so far in Britain that two men calling for Jihad and praising All@h while slaughtering a soldier in the streets cannot be named Muslim or be said to support Islam, because ‘hate speech’… When otherwise rational and intelligent people support this edict against truth because ‘disadvantaged’…

    When this doctrine is gaining increasing traction within a minority of socio-political theorists and SJW’s in the U.S, an answer is necessary.

    No. Hell no. Absolutely not. I denounce this behavior, decry it’s practitioners as cowards and traitors to their culture.

    Are those men ‘representative’ of all Islam? Are any terrorists? No. But that they did what they did because of their vision of Islam and what being a Muslim means, this is not in doubt. To pretend otherwise is intellectually dishonest, to protect other Muslims from the reality of what some do in their name is patronizing, and to hide from reality to avoid reprisals is cowardly.

    I’m not going to hold every practitioner of any religion to task for the actions of individuals, but I’m perfectly willing to hold them accountable for the documented tenets of their faith. And I’m willing to judge them on where they stand on those tenets.

    Islam is used to justify horrific acts of barbarity and wide-spread oppression right now. I’m not interested in equivalencies or historical comparisons, I’m interested in right now and civilized behavior in the modern world. If I’m going to hold myself to a civilized standard, then I must hold everyone else to that same standard, the equality of man demands it.

    • I’ve known people supporting hate speech who have vapors at the very notion that it means treating some crimes as ordinary, run-of-the-mill, less important than others — while describing it as treating as some crimes as special, important, more important than others.

      You really gotta hand it to people who can complain that when they say A is greater than B, someone observes that in that case, B is less than A.

    • I’m not going to hold every practitioner of any religion to task for the actions of individuals, but I’m perfectly willing to hold them accountable for the documented tenets of their faith. And I’m willing to judge them on where they stand on those tenets.

      Islam is used to justify horrific acts of barbarity and wide-spread oppression right now. I’m not interested in equivalencies or historical comparisons, I’m interested in right now and civilized behavior in the modern world. If I’m going to hold myself to a civilized standard, then I must hold everyone else to that same standard, the equality of man demands it.

      The problem with this is that the other side of this argument have been perfectly willing to condemn the whole, even if we’re open enough to condemn the philosophy/faith/ while accepting that not all adherents may be guilty of the things we condemn. The Left’s (and the tendency of atheists) to be smug, condescending assholes to religious people / Christians / anyone who believes in spirituality, while bleating about the intolerance of the same for ‘not being accepting’ of Islam because racism. They’re perfectly willing to hold ‘religious people’ for ‘being responsible for the atrocities of world history’ but will dissolve into screaming fits of rage if you point out that Communism, an atheist philosophy, is responsible for more deaths than any other documented religious group’s body count. ‘So and so and this person suffered because of their Christian parents/community, therefore all Christianity is evil’ is upheld as their reason why they’re HAPPY to condemn all Christians, and will practically call anyone who says ‘not all of them are like that’ liars. They’ll dredge up the past as if it were happening now, as you have pointed out.

      Neither the Left or Islam is interested in honest, truthful equality. Islam HAS religiously mandated second-class citizenship and I don’t think it tolerates atheism, while the vileprogs are of the ‘some pigs are more equal than others’ mindset. For them, being held to a civilized standard is “Submit to me.” Neither group is willing to act like civilized adults.

      But then again, if they were, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.

      • True. The coming shock, I suspect, will result from the sudden realization that when the survival of civilization is weighed in the balance with tolerating those actively destroying civilization some of us can be downright uncivilized in insisting on the validity and survival of civilized practice.

        Shorter: Given the choice between tolerating my subjugation and fighting for my civilization I’ll die before I kneel.

  14. Sarah, you mentioned in your post that you struggle with eczema. Have you tried coconut oil for it? Both applied to the skin, and used heavily in your diet? It’s supposed to be helpful (we are using it for other things, but it helps my psoriasis on the back of my head).

    • I have a friend who suffer from eczema and he’s had some success with tea tree oil ameliorating the itching.

    • coconut oil — most oils — block the pores, which make the eczema worse. It seems to be triggered by sweat, and if it’s under the oil, it makes things worse.

  15. To the extent that Britain First is LIKELY TO BE (note that I haven’t studied them beyond a tramp through wicki and some things my fans found) Nationalistic and promote a socialist agenda, they’re probably… unclassifiable.

    Always handy to enumerate the issue.

  16. Isn’t accusing a person of supporting a “hate-group” a form of hate speech? Doesn’t it seek to otherize the accused and diminish their humanity, depriving them of their right to speak their mind?

    • Only when a conservative does it. . .

    • hate speech is things they don’t like people to say.

      Witness that the SPLC, which actually has fomented a murderous attack, actually goes on to label many people and organizations as hate groups.

      • Related, in the news:
        Will the Obama White House use the Las Vegas cop-killers as a pretext for new civil liberties abuse?
        By Mark Tapscott | June 10, 2014 | 8:48 am
        It’s only Tuesday, but already previously unknown facts have become public this week that taken together may hint at a disturbing new side of the Obama White House.

        First, there is the revival by Attorney General Eric Holder of the Clinton-era Justice Department’s Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee.

        As Beltway Confidential’s Kevin Daley reported, Holder “restricted his definition of extremist groups to the far right, defining domestic terrorists as those ‘motivated by a variety of other causes from anti-government animus to racial prejudice.’”

        The IRS angle>/B>
        Second, there is an aspect of the IRS scandal made by public Monday by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s Chairman Darrel Issa and Rep. Jim Jordan, who chairs one of the panel’s subcommittees.

        As the Washington Examiner’s Susan Ferrechio reported, Internal Revenue Service officials sent the Federal Bureau of Investigation a “‘massive’ database listing of tax exempt organizations” shortly before the 2010 election.

        “At the very least, this information suggests that the IRS considered the political speech activities of nonprofits to be worthy of investigation by federal law enforcement officials,” Issa and Jordan said in a letter to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.

        Then there’s Las Vegas
        In the context of the Holder and IRS actions, Sunday’s murderous spree by Jerad and Amanda Miller seems like something right out of a Hollywood script.

        The Millers clearly were denizens of the criminally lunatic fringe of American society. They were fanatically anti-government and nurtured delusions of revolution.

        If all of this sounds familiar, it should. The committee being revived by Holder today was established by the Clinton administration in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing by Timothy McVeigh and his nutty co-conspirators in 1995.

        Here it comes
        Just as happened in the Clinton era, expect an onslaught in coming days of mainstream media stories purporting to link nutcases like the Millers to the Tea Party, conservative think tanks like the Heritage Foundation and House Republicans. See John Avlon’s Daily Beast column today as an example.

        But unlike 1995, the man sitting in the White House in 2014 has “a pen and a phone” and little hesitancy about using them unilaterally to advance his agenda.

        One might wonder if the ACLU’s Gabriel Rottman was being too kind in his assessment of the Holder decision, saying “given the already lenient standards for when the government can launch an investigation, the announced task force is both unnecessary and an invitation to investigate Americans for the beliefs they hold and not for any wrong-doing.”

        [See article site for embedded links.]

  17. I’ve pretty well made it known on the open Facebook forums I’m on that I consider calling me a ‘Fascist, Racist, Idiot, or other similar names’ is considered a compliment by me. That’s because they can’t bring an effective argument to the table and have to resort to name calling. I only received one ‘Like’ but, other than a few comments later about ‘that guy’ I find that I don’t get the obnoxious keyboard warriors anymore either.

    On the Islam thing, No, most of the Muslims aren’t terrible people at all. But, I went back to my old home town, small place, only ten to fifteen thousand people for a visit. Immediately I meet a Christian and we start talking. Within minutes he is telling me that he is like Will Rogers and never met a person he doesn’t like. Why is it that in his small town in New Mexico, the Jews are friendly, the Christians are friendly, the Atheists are friendly and the Muslims are friendly to everyone except that they hate the Jews. A Christian from the Philippines tells me that in his village the Christians and non-religious get along just fine; but, the Muslims don’t get along with either neighbor. I’ve got to think that it’s because they mix religion and civil law together. Like one said in a comment once, “We believe in democracy and that you have the right to live as you please; however, when I see one of your shameless women on the street with her legs showing, I become offended. That attitude prevails. Mexico has only a small connection with Islam dating back to the occupation of Spain. Yet the Muslim/Hispanic codes for women are still seen in Mexico even today.

    • Fail Burton

      The general tenor of Islam is a nuanced one people could spend years writing about. The Koran is fundamentally a document ranged around the idea of managing Christian and Jewish conquered populations in the Middle East in the 7th century. Islam was spread by the sword. Christianity had no swords to back it up for 2 centuries and more. It was spread by the gospel. Islam is institutionally more supremacist than Christianity on the strength of that alone. The Bible is an anti-oppression narrative of the underdog. The Koran a colonial narrative of the conquerer. Naturally the Bible is going to have a call for a more universal moral ethos; the Koran less since being an Arab (Islam) is its own moral ethos. It is identity vs. principle, the same fight we’re having in SFF between people who never shut up about their nifty race and gender and egalitarians who don’t like shifty word definitions for “racism.”

      • I want to point out that when I say people aren’t “Good Muslims” I don’t mean they’re bad people. They’re just not particularly tied in to their foundational document. In fact, acquiring religion by parentage means, from what I read, that though every Muslim is supposed to read the Koran, in many places the Islam they’ve received is sort of a game of telephone. It’s what someone heard someone say it was. (Of course, this is true for many old religions in traditional regions. Particularly since) most people aren’t interested in religion on the theology level. They practice what their neighbors practice and do it at a minimum level to derive comfort from in every day life. Kind of like not knowing physics, but knowing gravity.
        My contention remains that they’re in the west and they can’t say “our people can’t be evangelized by other religions” and “even people who don’t believe in our religion have to respect it as if they did.” No other religion gets that break in our society and nor should they.

  18. Kinda off topic, but here’s the most human-wave looking movie trailer I’ve seen in ages. Time will tell if the movie lives up to it.

    The second trailer for it has this great line, “We were not meant to save the Earth, but to leave it.”

    • That looks VERY interesting…

      • I dunno, I have a sneaking suspicion it is very full of GWH and Malthusian BS.

        You need to watch the long trailer:

        • I did. We’ll see – it may not be my cup of tea re SF, but I’ll go for the special effects if nothing else.

          Hey, I even liked the remake of “The Day The Earth Stood Still”. The plot sucked, the acting sucked, but the special effects were great!

          I realize that’s a lot like saying “Only the actress’s hooters saved the movie from being totally abysmal”, but then, I’m also partial to owls. ;)

          • Well, I coouldn’t sit through the whole thing, because i know that after all the technology gets disintegrated, billions die.

        • Christopher M. Chupik

          Well, even if there is some eco-doom, at least the characters are *doing* something, rather than just sitting around. Earth is doomed? Find a new planet!

          • Christopher M. Chupik

            I found this, from someone who claims to have inside knowledge of the film: “Earth has been devastated by war and famine caused by a plague that targets livestock, leaving only crops”. So, probably not global warming.

  19. You’re making the mistake of thinking the Left are sincere about their arguments. They know we are the good guys and that they are evil. They are lying.

    We don’t need to win an argument against them. We need to win a war against them.

  20. Yesterday I might sort of have started a fight on facebook. For those of you who are rolling their eyes, no, this is not normal for me.

    You see, I actually don’t like to fight.

    Amen.

    There’s just only so many swings at the nose you can ignore, though, and I think the “well, the fight is joined– GO TO IT!” thing is a survival trait. If I felt like I do before confrontation during a confrontation, there’s no way I’d manage to not be bullied into giving away everything I own and could steal…..

  21. Sometimes I look at how ugly these Facebook, Twitter, etc. fights get and wonder if I should start going by a pseudonym online.

  22. Josh A. Kruschke

    :-)

  23. “Yes, I’m going to be the first to say there are Muslims who never did harm to anyone. To the extent these people are decent, though, they’re not GOOD Muslims. And they know it, and in their heart they feel they should support the Jihad (which is not a spiritual fight, but a very physical one against infidels. You see, when I was fourteen an religiously seeking, I read the Koran. You cannot blow smoke up my orifices.) They might even give money to Jihadi groups.”

    Thank you, it drives me nuts that so few people have the guts to admit this. And I know from experience how many people will throw a rigging fit when you point this out; no matter how many people throw fits and stick their heads in the sand though, it is still true.