Archive for March, 2007
What I find disturbing about The View, isn’t just the dull-witted hosts; the more disturbing aspect of The View is that thousands of women watch that forsaken show. These very uniformed women spout nonsense day in and day out and it is hardly challenged. Elizabeth Hasselback is the foil for the ugly, dumber girls who can’t get a date. By pounding on her incessantly, all the women live out their young, blond and beautiful loathing fantasies. What’s even more galling to them is that Elizabeth is more intelligent than them, too.
So Rosie blithely spouts off a series of conspiracy theories: the U.S. and England let the sailors get caught to start a world war for MONEY! and Tower #7 went down in a controlled demolition, but controlled by who? Hmmmmmmmmmm? Cue the scary music. And the audience claps enthusiastically and Joy Behar nods sagely. Ugh. And American women watch that garbage and feel smugly smart and informed.
Jeff Goldstein has more.
Freedom and capitalism account for human nature’s base proclivities and channels them productively. In contrast, totalitarianism attempts to suppress man’s base nature–except, of course, the supreme leader and his oligarchy. They are free to express all aspects of themselves. Totalitarian fantasies abound among those who are convinced that their way would be best for everyone–if only everyone would submit to their betters.
Dr. Sanity has the best essay on the genesis of totalitarianism. She finds a seed being sown in Seattle by public school teachers removing Legos from the classroom. Here’s just a tidbit:
Human nature is what it is. This is not at all tragic; it is a simple truth. The biological fantasies of the leftist utopians; and the delusional fantasies of communists and socialists and all their 21st century heirs, have lead to incalculable levels of human suffering all over the world, as the proponents of these theories have tried to force humans to evolve into some sort of “ideal” state.
All such systems have failed the real-world tests in the last century; and all current versions of these ideologies will also eventually fail and fade away. To the extent that they attempt to incorporate some aspects of “human nature” into their failing system, they may last a bit longer as they slowly chip away at the human spirit and work to extinguish it; but it is actually much more likely that human nature will transform the perverse ideology than that the reverse will happen.
Righteous people buy fluorescent light bulbs. If people more righteous have their way, they’ll mandate super special energy saving light bulbs for the masses. But what if incandescent bulbs turn out to be better? And fluorescent bulbs turn out to be worse. (This last link has very important information.)
UPDATE: I want to make clear here that I’m all for energy saving technologies but I fundamentally distrust group think and “conventional wisdom” and everyone know that, blah, blah, blah. There is a reason, besides flickering that makes one look like a resurrected Zombie, that fluorescent lights haven’t been the standard besides in the DMV, hospital psych wards, and other institutions intent on casting average humans in a bad light. (Couldn’t help myself.) Innovations continue and there probably end up being more than one choice for perfect light. And I for one, look forward to fluorescent alternatives.
Blue Crab Boulevard, reports of a moderate Muslim who is fighting back against radical Islamists whom he hates. Go check this link. If all American Muslims looked like this and took this tack, there would be less anger at what is perceived as silence in the face of terrorism and brutality that some Islam believers condone.
Suddenly Jasser is a sought-after radio and TV commentator. His new role is taking lots of time, a scarce commodity for Jasser, who practices internal medicine and is president of the Arizona Medical Association.
But he believes that a Muslim voice is critical in response to the imams’ charges, which include one that they were discriminated against for praying in the airport gate area. “Americans are so worried about offending religious sensibilities,” he says. “We as Muslims must step forward and say, ‘This is not about prayer, it’s about airline security.’ “
“I believe I represent the views of the large majority of Muslims in this country,” says Jasser. “They are repulsed by political sermons, by apologetics for terrorism. The vast majority do want to separate their spiritual identity from their political identity.”
I would say that Dr. Jasser is right. We do need to hear more of these voices. Unfortunately his opposition is very vocal and exploits the American love of Freedom of Religion and non-discrimination. Yet, if they had their way, there would be no freedom for anyone else.
Over at Jihad Watch there is this about the notion that Islam may reform:
As I have said many times, there are moderate Muslims, but Islam itself is not moderate. That fact must be faced by both reformers and those who place high hopes upon them. And in fact, on the Bennett show this morning I explained why Islamic reform faced monumental obstacles, and said that we should not kid ourselves about its prospects for large-scale success.
Well, there might not be wholesale reform, but at least Americans can support those Muslims who believe in a church-state concept, who do not embrace violence (jihad/struggle) to conquer the world, who value freedom for all people. Dr. Jasser is one such Muslim.
More about him here.
HotAir has a nice video of Dr. Jasser.
Joe Conason calls for casting off Democratic restraint. It’s safe to say his definition of restraint and the Right’s definition of restraint are completely different. Then again, it is expected that the Left is childish, self-serving and utterly without shame. There is no “going too far”. How can one step over a line that doesn’t exist?
At least the furniture hasn’t been subjected to Al Gore himself….yet.
Are women angry because women are born angrier than men or are women angry because of society’s unfairness? And are women’s expressions of anger a sign of health or does expressed anger just create more of the same? Some researchers say keeping anger in may be okay. Others go further and say that contrary to popular belief, expressing anger is bad for your health. This seems to be supported by Martin Seligman’s work. Are you angry?
What’s wrong with women? Heck, what’s wrong with men? Men seem to take pleasure in someone getting hurt, if they believe the person deserves it. On the other hand, men are more altruistic than women , especially working women.
I don’t like these generalizations, although gender trends obviously exist. And while end-around, passive-aggressive (how ’bout we leave out the “passive” part) ways of dealing with conflict are irritating, men seem as inclined to this modus operandi as women–especially on the internet. On-line bullying seems to be gender blind. Anonymity to cloak nastiness is a huge problem and I know plenty of women who have used this instead of bringing a forth-right argument under their own name. Same goes for men, though, and there are far more men commenting around the internet than women.
Could it be that women are the biological protectors and because this role (they still give birth and ostensibly desire to protect their young) is defensive, rather than offensive, found ways to be passively aggressive? In addition, women are physically smaller than men. Overt verbal violence (yelling, protesting, confronting) can lead to physical violence and a woman is smaller giving her a disadvantage during conflict. Her weapons had to be more subtle to protect herself and her young. While this method ensured survival back in the day and even now to an extent, in a gender-neutral environment like the internet, it makes women look weak and petty when they refuse to directly engage.
Women are also less altruistic. This, too, makes sense to me. When it comes to protecting young, all young are not created equal. My young are more equal than your young. When it comes to caring for children, mothers are notoriously biased. Again, this to me ensures survival. If every kid has a protective, fiercely loving mom, he has a mom willing to defend him. Mothering turns a woman inward toward her children, her home. It would be unnatural for a woman to be any other way, don’t you think?
These traits taken to their pathological extreme are not pretty, but neither is the manly trait of trying to heroically save someone or something for stupid reasons. And some people with mental problems try to create ways to be heroic to display their altruism. And while it could be argued that “taking it outside” is an effective way of dealing with conflict, it very much impairs a woman’s ability to have an even fight. And while some women are empowered and possess that “you go girl” sensibility, if push comes to shove, she loses, even when she starts it (and she often starts it).
Bottom line, with technology like the internet, women can be equal. Women need to express themselves clearly and forthrightly without resorting to anonymity and personal attacks. And men need to express themselves without resorting to objectifying and sexualizing women who disagree with their position and opinion. And women who resort to the latter, too, are the worst. Not only do they fulfill the worst sort of female stereotypes, they exhibit the worst sort of male stereotypical behavior. Certainly, this can’t be what feminism aspires to–to serve up stereotypical female passive aggressive with stereotypical male objectifying.
James Dobson doesn’t like Senator Fred Thompson for President because “he’s not a Christian.” He was baptized into the Church of Christ some time back, but that doesn’t cut it. My brother sent my an article about this, boiling. This is why he hates the Republicans.
You know, this simple-Simon approach can get a person into lots o’ trouble. An acquaintance just had a “Christian man” botch a breast reduction surgery. Breast reductions weren’t his specialty and his Christianity didn’t kick in to mention that salient fact. His actions don’t indicate a strong Christian, do they? Or they indicate a Christian with a greed problem, or whatever. Christian or not, his fruits demonstrated weakness, but he sold himself as a “Christian surgeon.” For me, it’s between God and the surgeon if he worships Albert Einstein and nematodes. Is he a good surgeon?
Maybe it’s my midwestern upbringing, where religion wasn’t openly talked about like it is down here in Texas, but I have a reflexive distaste for anyone who talks about their Christianity. A guy I know has a bumper sticker that says, “I love my wife” and is a too-much-talkish Christian. A couple years ago, we saw the guy with two other women at two other times (weird coincidence) in the same week. They were more than friendly, if you know what I mean. Back at church, he was teaching a women’s bible study. Well, he certainly did like women. But please, spare me the Jesus talk.
My opinion is that unless I know a person is purposefully trying to worship the Devil, the merit-based system is best. Interestingly, Jesus taught the same thing. “You shall know them by their fruits.” Someone who talks the talk and leaves destruction in their wake should raise warning flags. Someone whose actions have lead to good results should receive respect whether they are a Christian or not. So en lieu of the Christianity litmus test, here’s my tests for candidates:
- What kind of policies does the person have–are they all messed up? One could argue that Giuliani’s pro-abortion stance is “messed up”, especially if one is a Christian. I would agree, but that would have to be balanced with his ability to do anything about it. And Presidents don’t have much to do about this issue. Nevertheless, policies must be looked at–war, economy, diplomacy, and even abortion.
- What kind of actions does the person take when stressed? Some people stink under pressure and the Presidency is one big pressure-filled position. I really don’t know how the leaders handle it. Society has changed so much. Everything comes so fast that a leader must be guided by over-riding principles and be able to make a good decision on the fly. Giulliani demonstrated his ability to handle this pressure after 9/11. McCain obviously handled pressure as a Prisoner of War. Sometimes, though, McCain slides too close to the edge of crazy and his policies cause distrust. Barack Obama seems like a smooth customer but he’s untested–so how would I know? I don’t like unkowns. Hillary Clinton seems to need to have every detail controlled in order to succeed. She’s very disciplined, there’s no question about that, but can she handle the surprising, shocking and unexpected? I’m not so sure. And on through the list of candidates.
So how Christian is Christian enough? How can anyone know the heart of another person? All that can be done is to look at a person’s actions. What have they said? What do they believe about America and the economy and our place in the world? But most importantly, how do they act? And does their actions line up with their words and beliefs?
Claiming Christianity means nothing if the actions are empty. Clay Ginn says this:
This brings us back around to Fred Thompson. He may or may not be a Christian. I’m willing to overlook that in an election. We aren’t voting for Senior Pastor here, we are voting for President of the United States. Fred Thompson has a good background as a lawyer and Senator. He’s a strong conservative on most all issues, and is an extremely good speaker. We need a statesman right now. Someone who can make the American people feel comfortable with the Presidency. He’s connected to Hollywood through Law and Order. And since he was the head of air traffic control when John McClane killed all those terrorists…oh wait. That wasn’t real was it? Never mind. (But, if it was real, we could call in John McClane to be the real-life Jack Bauer.)
I think he’s a good, viable candidate and would be happy to vote for him, Christian or not. Dr. Dobson needs to realize that he’s not the conscience of the entire Christian community. We can make our own choices for president.
LaShawn Barber has a “fantasy” about living and working exclusively with Christians. Her sister called it heaven.
I look forward to heaven where I know everyone will be perfect. In this world, some Christians annoy me as much as non-believers, some more. Sinners abounded at the Christian college I went to. Shocking, I know (not just the fact I went to a Christian school, but that sin was there, too). Who would have thunk it? People generally tried to be and do better, but there was a sordid underbelly. What would have passed for normal behavior at a regular college–drugs, sex, rock-n-roll–got the offender expelled at the Christian college, which was a good thing. On the other hand, when administrators looked the other way (especially for their own transgressions), a foulness pervaded the environment.
The main problem with contained Christian anythings is that disagreements often get characterized as “spiritual problems” so real change or improvements can be difficult to execute. Any difference with a person of authority is an “attitude problem” which negates the concerns or ideas. It’s the attitude that matters more than the rightness or wrongness of an issue. Lots of rot thrives under the God-loving veneer because the hierarchical nature of religions and their institutions.
Don’t get me wrong, at least in Christian environments people are trying. The bar is set higher on beliefs and behavior. In an idealistic environment though, disenchantment can quickly enter the milieu. Ironically, that can be a stumbling block for fragile believers.
So no, I’m not interested in the gated Christian community. Not in this life, anyway. I hope to be included when in the next one, though.
Blair is provocative for implying a military conflict might occur if the kidnapped sailors aren’t returned. Cap’n Ed asks is Blair Carter or Thatcher?
Every moment that passes, Iran wins. What the hell was a woman doing out there? A mother, no less. Nothing like giving the Iranians perfect propaganda fodder. There is a reason women shouldn’t be in combat situations. Would people worry as much if it were a bunch of guys? Some worry, yes, but it takes a different tenor when a mother is involved and then the humiliation of the head covering. It just pisses me off.