Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Inevitable Results of Collectivist Ideas

The horrors of Communism and Nazism were not simply the consequences of evil men coming to power; they were the precise results that followed from the concentration of power to impose collectivist ideas.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.267

Saturday, April 22, 2017

When Education is Secularized

If, for example, we secularize education, which we have done, of course, we cut ourselves loose from the ground of all truth.  If we no longer respect the past, do not honor and in some manner revere it, we will trample all that is received from it and hate ourselves.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.267

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Assault on American Civilization

The rebellion which rose to a peak here and there and over and over during the period from 1964 to the early 1970s was nothing else than an ongoing assault on American civilization.  The most dramatic episodes in this assault were Black riots in cities and student takeover attempts of universities.  But the assault had many facets, ranging from the raucous noise of hard rock to pornographic movies to the obscenities that now became rampant in much discourse to the peddling of sexism in Playboy to the vulgarities of Hustler magazine.  The assault was the new destruction which followed in the wake of the new reconstruction.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.247

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

SCOTUS vs the Constitution

The high standing of the Supreme Court rests on its position as the court of last resort in defending the Constitution.  The respect in which the Constitution has been held is the foundation of the Court’s authority.  To the extent that the high court deviates from the written Constitution and relies on its own assertions to that same extent it is undermining the base of its authority.  . . . Pronouncements by the Court without Constitutional backing have no popular base.

To the extent that the Supreme Court rules by its own will, it is rule by an oligarchy.  That is, it is a rule by a few men—nine to be exact—over the rest.  That the court had become exactly that was frequently charged in the 1960s.  Indeed, one writer reasoned, with sound logic, that “If it is true that a construction of the Constitution by the Supreme Court . . . is . . . ‘the law of the land’ . . . ; if it is true that a ‘constitutional right’ can come into being merely on the Court’s say . . . , then, where in all candor, are we?  If a judicial interpretation of the Constitution is, by definition, the Constitution, why then we are in the grips of judicial despotism!  That is the meaning of despotism.  An unchallengeable authority can be benign, or malevolent, but it is a despotism if the rest of the commonwealth has not practical alternative to succumbing to its will.”

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.233-234

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Do Not Usurp the Constitution

If in the opinion of the people the distribution or modification of the constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates.  But let there be no change by usurpation; for though this in one instance may be the instrument of good, it is the customary weapon by which free governments are destroyed.  The precedent must always greatly over-balance in permanent evil any transient or partial benefit which the use can at any time yield.

George Washington.  Cited by  Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.232

Saturday, April 15, 2017

The Courts Should NOT Add to the Constitution

This Court, limited in function . . . , does not serve its high purpose when it exceeds its authority, even to satisfy justified impatience with the slow workings of the political process.  For when, in the name of constitutional interpretation, the Court adds something to the Constitution that was deliberately excluded from it, the Court in reality substitutes its view of what should be so for the amending process.

Justice John M. Harlan, Dissent in Reynolds v. Sims, 1964

Friday, April 14, 2017

Diversity - The Emperor Has No Clothes

In the beginning was Diversity.  And the Diversity was with God, and the Diversity was God. Without Diversity was nothing made that was made.  And it came to pass that nasty old “orthodox” people narrowed down diversity and finally squeezed it out, dismissing it as heresy. But in the fullness of time (which is of course our time), Diversity rose up and smote orthodoxy hip and thigh. Now, praise be, the only heresy is orthodoxy. As widely and as unthinkingly accepted as this reconstruction is, it is historical nonsense: the emperor has no clothes.

D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Check Your Worldview

A worldview that says human life has no inherent value of dignity will never lead to utopia, no matter how advanced the tools and gadgets. . . .  Utopianism linked to power leads to gulags and death camps.

Nancy Pearcey

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Harm to Children of Divorce

When we consider the child who is the fruit of marriage, we may also come to realize the enormous seriousness of divorce.  It is fairly common to hear people say in connection with divorce that they fear especially for the children.  This statement, though it may ordinarily refer only to the disruption and uncertainty which divorce brings to the life of a child, may also point to an even deeper reality.  If the child is the sign of the unity—indeed more, the incarnation of the unity—of this man and woman who now propose to rupture their oneness, then of course we must fear for the child.  What event could be more calculated to disturb the child at the very center of his personal identity?  Parents are not merely a cause and children an effect which can easily be separated.  Here again we must remember that our commitments in the flesh are personal commitments.  The child’s personhood, his sense of identity is involved.  To tear the marriage asunder is in some sense to do the same to the child.

Human Sexuality:  A Theological Perspective.  A Report of the Commission on Theology and Church Relations of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, as prepared by its Social Concerns Committee, September 1981, pg. 25-26

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Nature Abhors a Religious Vacuum

There was a fallacy in thinking that religion could be removed from our schools.  The Left claimed that the result would be a benign neutrality.  They have been proven mistaken.  Since nature abhors a vacuum, the religions of moral relativism and secular humanism have simply replaced the religions that were expelled.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.342

Monday, April 10, 2017

Government Supports Error

It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself. Subject opinion to coercion: whom will you make your inquisitors?

Thomas Jefferson (1781)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

The New Plantation

Uncle Sam has developed a sophisticated poverty plantation, operated by a federal government, overseen by bureaucrats, protected by media elite, and financed by the taxpayers.  The only difference between this plantation and the slave plantations of the antebellum South is perception.

If anyone works their way off of the plantation and denounces it, they are called “uppity” or “sellout” or even “Uncle Tom.”  Instead of a physical beating, defectors are ostracized in the public forum.

Star Parker

Saturday, April 8, 2017

The New Deal Extended the Depression

The New Deal programs did not end the Great Depression; they delayed recovery and prolonged it.  Economically, there is but one route to prosperity, and that is through freedom of enterprise, productivity, and competition.  The New Deal hampered enterprise and competition.  Production was discourage by such devices as acreage allotments for farmers, shorter hours of work in industry and reducing then number of people in the labor force.  Enterprise was hampered by diverting capital from private hands and spending it for public employment and public enterprises.  The proof of the pudding came in the period 1937-1939, when in the midst of prolonged depression, the depression deepened.  The stock market crashed again in 1937, though not so loudly.  Unemployment rose, until in the course of 1938 it reached the highs of 1933, despite such programs as WPA and the CCC.  According to some surveys, it reached 11 million in this period.  Higher wages resulting from government encouraged unionization and wages and hours legislation contributed to the deepening depression.

To show how the New Deal programs prolonged depression and worsened the situation, it may be helpful to examine a little more closely the fate of the farmers.  These measures were often supposed to save the family farm and even increase the number of people in farming.  If anything, they worked the other way.  About 25 per cent of the population lived on farms in 1933; this had fallen to 23 per cent in 1940 and to 15 per cent in 1950, when most of the programs were still in effect.  As for tenant and sharecroppers, who were supposed to be special objects of consideration, the comments of two historians are in order.  One says, “The AAA brought benefits to almost all commercial farmers.  But in limiting acreage and providing the strongest possible incentive for more efficient land use, and thus for better technology, it forced sharecroppers off the land and worsened the plight of farm laborers.”  Another says, “New Deal policies made matters worse.  The AAA’s reduction of cotton acreage drove the tenant and the cropper from the land. . . .”  They prolonged the agony of leaving the farm, with the usually small government checks, but by limiting acreage to money crops they sealed the fate of many farms.

The New Deal concentrated much attention on raising wages and farm prices.  To foster this, it adopted monetary and fiscal policies which brought in later years the scourge of inflation, the destruction of savings, and a society bent on somehow holding on to a portion of what has been earned.  The long-term result to this date [October 1986] has been the progressive destruction of the dollar.  That, too, is a legacy of the New Deal.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.93-94

Friday, April 7, 2017

Unemployment Insurance?

If extended unemployment be accepted as the norm for a considerable portion of the population, it makes sense to insure against this hazard.  Indeed, prudent people have long believed it wise to set something aside against a “rainy day,” i.e., against some unfavorable circumstance beyond their control.  When government undertakes such a program, it takes over at least a portion of the responsibility which before that fell upon the individual, family, or, perhaps, the local community or neighbors.  From an economic point of view, government provided unemployment compensation amounts to paying people not to work.  It is a highly uneconomic, or diseconomic, practice.  This is made more impractical, if that is possible, by taking the contribution to the program from the employer and placing no penalty upon the worker while he receives the compensation.  The only check on it is that the compensation must end after a specified period of time.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.78

Thursday, April 6, 2017

We Need Social Censure

How did we once maintain a society that was a model of prosperity, tranquility, and politeness?  Part of the answer is that, as a God-fearing nation, we employed several fundamental moral weapons which we have now become too timid, or too politically correct, to use.  These weapons include disapproval, ostracism, and other sanctions.

Let’s see how such weapons would relate to the phenomenon of illegitimacy.  Thirty-five years ago [53 now], the unmarried teenage girl who became pregnant was sent away to have the baby.  The shame she brought on herself and her family was deep and lasting.  In addition, the bastard child carried the disgrace throughout his life, with diminished career and marriage prospects.  As we approach the end of the millennium [the book is copyright 1999], our enlightened generation tends to throw up our hands in horror at the thought that ostracism and moral censure should be put to such barbaric use.  I would argue to the contrary, on three grounds.  First, I suggest that the traditional use of ostracism and censure educated society on the proper ties between people, God, and community, while the abandonment of these tools has led to rampant and dangerous individualism.  Second, I maintain that proper and judicious use of social sanctions prevents far more problems and misery than it creates, as do other forms of punishment.  Finally, I argue that no community can succeed without ostracism and censure. . . .

The point of social sanctions, like the point of any other deterrence mechanism, is not to ruin lives but to preserve the common welfare.  Anyone urging the return of such sanctions hopes that their very presence will make the need for their use quite rare.  Back in the 1950s, the number of pregnant schoolgirls who were stigmatized was tiny, and so was the rate of illegitimacy.  The number of vagrants who were harassed out of respectable neighborhoods was minute, and the streets were safe and clean.

The tool of ostracism and social censure was used most effectively to limit both drunken driving and cigarette smoking.  In both cases it was not considered sufficient to merely penalize the actions; it was also necessary to brand those who engaged in those behaviors.  As a society, we are obviously quite comfortable employing social disapproval as a tool for social improvement.  We are just a little queasy about utilizing these undoubtedly effective tools for moral ends.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.255-256

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Which Is Really Greed?

If workers struggle for higher wages, this is hailed as “social gains”; if businessmen struggle for higher profits, this is damned as “selfish greed.”

Ayn Rand

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Teach a Man to Fish?

I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means.  I think the best way of doing good to the poor is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it.  In my youth I traveled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer.  And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.

Benjamin Franklin

Monday, April 3, 2017

Deception By Investment

The blinding of a person’s will happens when he or she has fully invested themselves into something which turns out to be a terrible mistake. Not willing to accept that they have fully invested themselves in an egregious error blinds them from the reality of it. They simply will the error to be true. We see this all the time in cult interaction. You can prove to a person that he has been deceived, that he is believing and living a lie, and you may even see the distress this information is causing him, yet he sets his face, his will, and simply refuses to “understand” what you are saying.

Don and Joy Veinot, “Invested

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Laws Empowering Unions

It may not be immediately clear why an act empowering labor unions would be for the redistribution of wealth.  Granted, it does not exactly fall under the category of levying either a direct or indirect tax.  But so far as labor unions succeed in getting higher compensation for their members, a redistribution of wealth takes place, whether from employers to employees or ultimately from the higher prices that consumers may pay for the union produced goods.  Thus, a redistribution of wealth is at least contemplated when labor unions are empowered by the government.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.75

Friday, March 31, 2017

The Takeover of Humanism

Humanism denies absolute truth and biblical values.  Thus, there is no right or wrong.  Students are to accept relative answers based on personal needs. Public school literature now teaches children to become better citizens in a new world order.  Country, family, and God are no longer goals to be achieved, but instead they are seen as causes for bigotry, narrow-mindedness, prejudice, and intolerance.  The humanist teaches our children new thought patterns that meet the goals of the emerging elitist class who will equip society for global governance.

During the past one hundred years, humanism has grown bolder in its attack against the founding fathers of our nation. In the field of public education more schools have closed their doors to the Bible.  In many instances, teachers are prohibited from encouraging students to follow the teachings of Christ.  Ironically, it is easier to teach the Koran, the writings of Buddha, or Yoga than Christianity.  Fewer teachers are familiar with the exhortations of the men who established our nation; and as a result, relativism has inflicted great harm to a once great nations, as well as to a once vibrant Christian evangelical movement.

Paul Smith, The New Evangelicalism: The New World Order.  Cited in The Berean Call, March 2017

Thursday, March 30, 2017

A Stay-at-Home Mom is NOT Wasting Talent

If a woman professionally arranges flowers, or cooks fine Italian meals, or plays violin for an orchestra, or gives singing lessons, she will be praised for engaging her gifts and “making something of herself,” even if she returns home from her day’s labors and is unwilling or unable to care for her children. But if a woman “well versed in all of the household arts” does all of these things for those whom she loves and cares about the most, “we shake our heads and say that she has wasted her talents” by staying at home.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Political Correctness Destroying Education

As it is, our schools give us a “multicultural” education that is just a cultural solvent and a cover for the stringent imposition of a rigid and oppressive orthodoxy. Public schools avoid religious questions at the cost of censoring the most human questions. The natural impulse for patriotism is snuffed out by self-righteous condemnation of our grandparents and the figures of the past. The stories composing our history are neglected in favor of whatever creed the child’s primary educators—the state—happen to favor. Our schools have become a “dead loss.”  

Higher education is no better off. In some cases, it is much worse. There, political correctness and identity politics dominate discourse. Learning is no more. … Your average state university is an expensive program in aggressive miseducation, and most Catholic universities are not much different.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Insistence On Unreality Destroys Culture

The most impressive obstacle to restoration of culture is the persistent insistence that unreality is real: that boys can be girls, that men and women are the same, that the unborn child is not a person, that divorce is okay for ourselves and the kids, that literature (especially poetry) and culture are fungible subjects of inquiry, and so on. …

The necessary remedy for such cant and for the political paradigms and correctness that bolster it is a total rejection of their terms and conditions … We must learn anew to read and speak, to sing and work and dance and pray, and to build and cherish beautiful things.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Results of Bad Anthropology

Bad anthropology has given us natural rights without foundations or directions—a freedom of indifference but not for excellence. Bad anthropology has debased modern man’s mind so that it is unable to distinguish liberty from license, rendering man unable to think about which desires should be acted on, which preferences should be satisfied. Bad anthropology has sought to liberate man from the very communities where he finds meaning and purpose, alienating man from work, from family, and from God.

The result is a working class without the values and virtues to flourish in the condition of freedom and a ruling class more devoted to a global community of elites than to its own communities. The result is a working class increasingly isolated from meaningful relationships and thus more anxious about its future in an age of economic uncertainty and a ruling class increasingly isolated from its working-class neighbors and thus unaware of their anxieties. The result is a nation—both working class and ruling class—that increasingly lacks a transcendent orientation and thus fails to have even a decent humanistic vision.

If we do not have God for a Father, we will not see our fellow man as our brother. If we are not made in the image and likeness of God, we will not treat every life as created equal and endowed with unalienable rights—indeed, we will view our neighbors as random, meaningless cosmic dust that gets in our way.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Family vs Government

The family is a natural society with its own nature and integrity. Because of the natural reality of the family, we have certain obligations. If you are a husband or a wife, you have certain duties to your spouse. If you are a parent, you have certain duties to your children, regardless of whether or not you ever chose them. And children, not Social Security administrators, have duties to their parents, especially as they age. It is the natural reality of father and child, mother and child, that creates the relationship of authority and responsibility.

This places limits on what the government can do. The government is not free to recreate the family. The government is not free to usurp the authority of parents over the education of their children or adult children over the care of their elderly parents.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

The REASON for Real Marriage

Marriage exists to bring a man and a woman together as husband and wife to be father and mother to any children their union produces. Marriage benefits everyone because separating the bearing and rearing of children from marriage burdens innocent bystanders; not just children, but the whole community. Without healthy marriages, the community must step in to provide more directly for the children’s well-being and upbringing.  By encouraging the norms of marriage—monogamy, sexual exclusivity, and permanence—the state strengthens civil society  and reduces its own role.

Government has always recognized marriage—always understood as the union of a man and a woman—because marriage benefits society in a way that no other relationship or institution does.  Marriage is society’s least restrictive means of ensuring the well-being of children.  State recognition of marriage protects children by encouraging men and women to commit to each other and take responsibility for their children.

The future of this country depends on the future of marriage, and the future of marriage depends on citizens’ understanding what it is and why it matters and demanding that government policies support, not undermine true marriage.

Ryan T. Anderson, “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom,” pg.207

Friday, March 24, 2017

Enemies of the People

The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.

Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Democratic Party Is Destructive

The Democratic party cultivates black anger at America, victimhood, group grievance and dependency on government.  In almost every area of life, the better things are, the worse it is for the Democratic party.  The Democratic party has become a wholly destructive force in this country.  . . . If you vote for any Democrat, you contribute to the damage.

Dennis Prager

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Freedom Needs Education

The secret of Freedom lies in educating people, whereas the secret of tyranny is in keeping them ignorant.

Maximilien Robespierre

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

All Freedoms Begin With Free Economy

A man’s right to work as he will, to spend what he earns, to own property, to have the state as servant and not as master, they are the essence of a free economy, and on that freedom all our other freedoms depend.

Margaret Thatcher

Monday, March 20, 2017

Cultural Results of Anti-God Agenda

We have raised a generation unaware of God’s presence and its potency as an aid to self-monitoring. What might happen, for example, if a gang member were to reject bad influence with a paraphrase of Joseph’s words: “God is watching and would not want me to go with you.”  (Actually, if more of us were to simply think this sentiment, what impact might that have on morality in our society?). ...  

In spite of the fact that many studies show considerably less criminal activity among religiously involved families, the anti-god theoreticians feel that the cure is worse than the disease.  Under no circumstances can we encourage religion, and we must try to remove it from organizations such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts (or at least remove these organizations from our schools).  Most ordinary citizens would disagree.  The most serious public policy consequence of this principle is that...there can never be enough policemen. Once each person’s internal monitoring system has been disconnected, everyone needs to be watched all the time. …

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.254

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Discernment In Choosing a Wife

My recommendation to any young man discerning marriage: ask your prospective bride how she feels about modern feminism. If she laughs at you, much as my wife would, you’ve got yourself a keeper. If she takes the opportunity to go on a 18-minute rant about the imaginary “gender wage gap” and the importance of “reproductive rights,” run away as fast as your feet will carry you. My friend, you just dodged a bullet. Praise Jesus.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Government Gives - And It Takes

A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have.

Gerald Ford

Friday, March 17, 2017

Public Schools and Gender Ideology

The belief that one’s internal sense of self determines maleness or femaleness and that subjective feelings take precedence over an objective physical reality constitutes a severing of mind from body. Our sex is who we are: it can’t be amputated from our body like a limb. But the true believers in gender ideology are hard at work, pulling in converts to this gnostic worldview that shuns the material that we humans are made of: the body. You can be assured that an ideology like this will, to use Pope Francis’s words, lead to the “annihilation of man” in our culture, in the law, and in the lives of those who fall prey to the tenets of this weaponized “civil rights” movement.

What worries me most is that schools across the country are quashing debate, abandoning academic excellence, and reducing themselves to pawns in a political movement whose claims are highly questionable, unscientific, and harmful to children. Public schools have a duty to serve all children, but a school cannot serve children and a totalitarian ideology all at once. . . . 

First, schools will teach children to accept an ideology that is predicated on the lie that biological sex plays second fiddle to a self-proclaimed, subjective gender identity, and that the sex of one’s body is mutable or even irrelevant. This isn’t just an idea that you can tuck away in a unit study or an anti-bullying presentation. It will inevitably find its way into every aspect of a school and make a deep impression on the developing minds of children. For example, girls, under the regressive mandates of anti-bullying and gender inclusion policies, would have to agree to call boys in their locker room “girls,” effectively losing their rights to free speech and to privacy from males. And science—particularly biology—would die a quick death at the hands of a concept that necessarily eradicates observable facts about human sexuality. Gender ideology in the curriculum is a lie enshrined as truth.

Second, institutionalizing gender ideology will require that schools ignore the evidence that it causes real harm to children. You can’t extol the virtues of gender ideology and question its soundness at the same time. By celebrating transgenderism as a valid identity, schools are promoting a body-mind disconnect that may very well bring on the gender dysphoric state they were attempting to prevent. And when the widely accepted “affirmative” medical treatments of gender dysphoria in children are both poorly studied and glaringly injurious, we have nothing to celebrate.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

"General Welfare" Clause

Regarding the general welfare phrase, James Madison addressed this question in 1817 in vetoing a bill for internal improvements.  He said, "To refer the power in question to the clause 'to provide for the common defense and general welfare' would be contrary to the established and consistent rules of interpretation, as rendering the special and careful enumeration of powers which follow nugatory and improper.  Such a view of the Constitution would have the effect of giving to Congress a general power of legislation instead of the limited one hitherto understood to belong to them. . . ."

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.61-62

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Minimum Wage Laws

If you need government to set you a “living wage,” it’s because you have failed to make yourself worth a living wage.  A higher minimum wage is merely a subsidy to ensure you don’t have to put in the effort necessary to earn what you want.  I’m unclear why your failure to work hard, gain skills and not do the stupid things that lead a 30 year old to be making minimum wage morally compels me to give you my money.

Kurt Schlichter, Townhall, March 31, 2014

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Evidences for Ideology vs Principled Position

When people make blanket claims about a group (“white people are like X;” “black people never do Y”), they are expressing an ideology, not using words tailored to fit reality. Human beings are simply too diverse and complicated to fit into such universal categories. If you hear someone summing up the “state of the Russian mind” or “what the American people want” or claiming that politician X shows sure signs of a social pathology, but there is no evidence of research nor of any time spent personally examining the psychology of the individual, then you’re dealing with quackery; the person is a fake. Such people will check their scientific methodology at the door in order to gain a place in the arena of modern media’s ideological shouting match. They are welcomed by groups that want a certain sort of “voice”—not a quiet, calm, thoughtful voice, but one that will provide pseudo-intellectual “cover” for all the prejudices that group already possesses.

If, rather than trying to glean evidence from observable reality, a person seems more intent on forcing reality into the categories of his or her system, then you’re dealing with an ideologue. If evidence supporting a theory is trumpeted loudly and repeatedly, and evidence that may refute it is ignored repeatedly, then it’s an ideology, not a principled position. If every bit of data, no matter how contrary, is taken as evidence of the truth of the theory, then it’s ideology, not science.

If media conversations are staked two-to-one against a position, then the organizers are ideologues, not holders of a principled position. If organizers clearly set out to disadvantage one side rather than the other, they are ideologues. If interlocutors spend most of their time engaging in ad hominem attacks rather than examining terms, premises, or arguments, then they’re ideologues, not holders of a principled position. If an interlocutor seems more concerned with “looking smart” than with coming to some common understanding of the truth, then he or she is probably an ideologue. If the most pressing argument is the prestige and ostensible expertise of the speaker, or the supposed lack of these on the part of the interlocutor, then you’re probably dealing with an ideology.

Randall Smith,  “Ideology and the Corruption of Language

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Language of Ideology

[H]ow do we recognize the language of “ideology” and distinguish it from a “principled position”? One common clue is that those who hold a principled position welcome arguments; they welcome having their position tested and possibly corrected. A principled position always has room for increased subtlety and greater complexity. Holders of an “ideology,” on the other hand, will tend to eschew argument or any examination of the ideology’s underlying presuppositions or premises, often refusing to concede that greater subtlety may be required to apply the principles to real-life situations. Ideology disdains argument; people with principled positions embrace it warmly and engage in it gladly. . . .

[C]orruption of language is a characteristic sign of ideology. Throughout the Platonic dialogues, Socrates spends a great deal of time trying to clarify words, attempting to get clear on what people mean when they use terms such as “good” or “just” or “great.” Ideologies want to skip over all that hard work. Asking what someone means by “good” or “just” or “fair” is, to the devoted ideologue, like the greengrocer refusing to put the sign in his window. It suggests you’re not a party member.

Watch out for this. Refusing to discuss one’s terms because the point is “obvious,” insisting on using euphemisms rather than plain speech, relying on a very specialized vocabulary and being unable to express one’s thoughts without it, using speech to vilify persons rather than to clarify positions: these are all clues that you’re dealing with ideology, not principle.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Looters vs Producers

When a society establishes criminals-by-right and looters-by-law — men who use force to seize the wealth of disarmed victims — then money becomes its creators’ avenger.  Such looters believe it safe to rob defenseless men, once they’ve passed a law to disarm them.  But their loot becomes the magnet for other looters, who get it from them as they got it.  Then the race goes, not to the ablest at production, but to the most ruthless at brutality.  When force is the standard, the murderer wins over the pickpocket.

Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Public School and Government Indoctrination

I began to wonder, reluctantly, whether it was possible that being in school itself was what was dumbing them down.  Was it possible I had been hired not to enlarge children’s power, but to diminish it?  That seemed crazy on the face of it, but slowly I began to realize that the bells and the confinement, the crazy sequences, the age-segregation, the lack of privacy, the constant surveillance, and all the rest of national curriculum of schooling were designed exactly as if someone had set out to “prevent” children from learning how to think and act, to coax them into addiction and dependent behavior.

John Taylor Gatto

Friday, March 10, 2017

Freedom Untethered From Truth

Freedom untethered from truth is freedom’s worst enemy.  For if there is only your truth and my truth, and neither one of us recognizes a transcendent moral standard (call it “the truth”) by which to adjudicate our differences, then the only way to settle an argument is for you to impose your power on me, or for me to impose my power on you.  Freedom untethered from truth leads to chaos; chaos leads to anarchy; and since human beings cannot tolerate anarchy, tyranny as the answer to the human imperative of order is just around the corner.  The false humanism of the freedom of indifference leads first to freedom’s decay, and then to freedom’s demise.

George Weigel, “John Paul II and the Crisis of Humanism,” First Things, December 1999.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Good Ideas in Plato’s “Republic”

With regard to the censorship of stories, Socrates (or Plato) seems above all concerned with what we expose our children to. What intelligent parents don’t regulate what their children read, watch, listen to, etc.? But once this becomes a matter of public legislation, we stir up a hornet’s nest. And outlawing certain types of music, musical instruments, food, and so on, does appear extreme. Yet I have always suspected that Plato’s main purpose with all of this is to get us to see that aesthetic worlds aren’t morally or politically neutral. . . .

Beyond mere survival, for human beings to flourish, they need the virtues. Actually, this is a tautology: human flourishing just is living a virtuous life. As Socrates argues at the end of Book 1, a pruning knife needs its “virtue,” that is, sharpness, to be a good pruning knife. So too, he adds, human beings need the virtues to live the good life. But which virtues are the virtues? In Book 4, Socrates tells us that they are wisdom, courage, temperance, and justice—what St. Ambrose would later call the virtutes cardinales. We can discuss whether this is a complete list, but, rightly understood, I don’t see how anyone can deny that the cardinal virtues are essential for a good human life.

However, just as no one teaches himself his mother tongue, no one trains himself in virtue. We are trained in virtue by others. Not only, then, do we need a community to survive, we also need it, as I mentioned earlier, to flourish. Ideally, training in virtue occurs in the family. But families need environments that are friendly to this training in virtue, even reinforcing it where appropriate. In other words, virtue shouldn’t be merely a private matter but a public and political one. Socrates gets this. You might say that he gets it all too well. It’s the reason for the censorship, the closed social classes, and the banishment of the mimetic poets. These are among the measures Socrates proposes to make the city a well-ordered city.

Joseph G. Trabbic,  In Defense of Plato’s Republic 

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Importance of Books

Books are carriers of civilization.  Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill.  They are engines of change, windows on the world, “lighthouses erected in the sea of time.”

Barbara W. Tuchman

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

From “Civics” to “Social Studies”

Civics was a class that you used to be required before you could graduate from high school.  You were taught what was in the U.S. Constitution.  And after all the student rebellions in the ‘60s, civics was banished from the student curriculum and was replaced by something called social studies.  Here we live in a country that has a fabulous constitution and all these guarantees, a contract between the citizens and the government — nobody knows what’s in it.  It’s one of the best kept secrets.  And so, if you don’t know what your rights are, how can you stand up for them?

Frank Zappa

Monday, March 6, 2017

Dare To Tell the Truth

Strange times are these in which we live when old and young are taught falsehoods in school, and the person that dares to tell the truth is called at once a lunatic and fool.


Sunday, March 5, 2017

When Thoughts Aren’t Controlled

The implications of controlling one’s thoughts are huge.  One arena of life in which much damage is caused by the secular position is that there are no bad thoughts in married life.  Mainstream magazines often quote therapists who encourage sexual fantasizing as harmless and at times even beneficial.  The truth is that male human nature being what it is, no real live woman, let alone a wife who has borne him a child or two, can possibly match up to the object of her husband’s fantasies.  Likewise, few middle-aged men would win the Mr. Olympia contest.  Why would anyone encourage husbands or wives to engage in behavior that can only make them less content in their marriage?

Children raised with no ability or desire to restrain their fantasies of sensual and material appetites are being condemned to a life of constant dissatisfaction.  Dissatisfaction regularly leads to resentment and then envy.  It is a short step from envy to a justification for taking what is not rightfully yours, or to exacerbating your problems by blaming them on anyone but yourself.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.253-254

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Losing Liberty

Men fight for liberty and win it with hard knocks.  Their children, brought up easy, let it slip away again, poor fools.  And their grandchildren are once more slaves.

D.H. Lawrence

Friday, March 3, 2017

A Road to Terror

Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.

Harry S. Truman

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Rule by Force Won't Have Peace

So long as [men] hold the tribal notion that the individual is sacrificial fodder for the collective, that some men have the right to rule others by force, and that some (any) alleged "good" can justify it — there can be no peace within a nation and no peace among nations. 

Ayn Rand (1905-1982)

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

When Government Denies Guns to Citizens

When any nation mistrust its citizens with guns, it is sending a clear message.  It no longer trusts it citizen because such a government has evil plans.

George Washington

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Problem of the Welfare State

Grover Cleveland once asked, “If the government supports the people, who will support the government?”  His meaning was this:  The government is wholly dependent upon tax receipts (or occasionally other types of payments) for its revenues.  It is a nonsensical reversal of roles for the people to be dependent upon the government for their material well-being.  To put it yet another way, the government produces no goods; rather it consumes some portion of the goods taken from the people.  It can only play a larger role by increasing the portion that it takes and thus reducing the amount available to people generally.  Cleveland’s question still wants a satisfactory answer, but a welfare state has been established based upon the premise that government will provide for a vast assortment of material and other needs.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.1

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Good Education!

I find television to be very educational.  Every time someone switches it on I go into another room and read a good book.

Groucho Marx

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Human Laws Best When Reflecting God’s Laws

Limited government and religious liberty are best served when human laws reflect the “laws of nature and of nature’s God,” as the Declaration of Independence puts it.  All men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with a right to life.  Mankind is created male and female, and marriage, by nature, is the union of a man and a woman.  Only by redefining these concepts according to desire rather than nature is it possible to concoct a “right to choose” that extends to the killing of an unborn child or and endlessly malleable concept of “marriage.”

Ryan T. Anderson, “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom,” pg.199

Friday, February 24, 2017

"Casual Sex" is Immature and Selfish

Casual sex is fundamentally selfish and degrading. Both partners agree to use and be used by the other. The message they send to each other, quite explicitly, is this: “I’m using you for your body, which I value only as a masturbatory object. You are a sex toy with a brain, but I don’t care about your brain and would rather you not use it right now.” . . . 

In marriage, we give ourselves to the other, lifting them and ourselves up in the process. This is why sex ought to wait for marriage, because only after that lifelong oath has been sworn can we hope to use sex in a way that’s truly sacrificial and self-giving. Sex should be enjoyable, but it should also be an expression of love and devotion. If we take the love and devotion out of sex, we’ve turned it into an act of mutual objectification. And eventually, without the love and devotion, we won’t even have the enjoyment anymore.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Men Are Responsible for Abortion

Men—all too frequently seeking to maximize their sexual pleasure at as little cost as possible—found the right to abortion extremely liberating for them; all they risked was having to pay a few hundred dollars to avoid the potential result of their behavior. Meanwhile, women were too often reduced to mere objects for the sexual gratification of their liberated male counterparts. . . .
Rather than liberating women, abortion has rendered women vulnerable to the sexual appetites of unscrupulous men who—freed of society’s expectation that they will care for the mothers of their children—use, abuse, and discard them in assembly-line fashion. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

No Rights If Not Self-Aware?

If self-awareness is necessary to confer rights upon individuals then rape would be legal provided that the woman was drugged beforehand. Ideas have consequences so think before you decide what makes people valuable.

Mike S. Adams

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Tyranny in the Nursery

Wherever is found what is called a paternal government, there is found state education.  It has been discovered that the best way to insure implicit obedience is to commence tyranny in the nursery.

Benjamin Disraeli

Monday, February 20, 2017

Don’t Be A Coward

He who has truth on his side is a fool as well as a coward if he is afraid to own it because of other men’s opinions.

Daniel Defoe

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Bad Logic

The soundest reasoning leads to the wrongest conclusions when the premises are false.

Vilhjahmur Stevansson

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The USA is Rotting From Within

The deterioration of every government begins with the decay of the principles on which it was founded.

Charles-Louis De Secondat 

Friday, February 17, 2017

An Illiterate Culture

We are a people now illiterate in a way that is unprecedented for the human race. We can decipher linguistic signs on a page, but we have no songs and immemorial stories in our hearts. The pagan Germanic warrior could not read, and where were the books for it anyway? But he had centuries of song in his mind, and he well knew of that specially gifted man, the scop, who could sing by heart many thousands of verses about the old heroes and their adventures, and could even compose new songs of his own: wordum wrixlan, weaving patterns of words that were as intricate as the vermiculate embellishments upon the hilt of a warrior’s sword.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

College "Education"

College education is less about the pursuit of truth and more about imparting a carefully guarded, often forcefully imposed narrative of economic socialism, political globalism, moral relativism, militant secularism, and personal meaning through hedonism.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Proper Education

To educate a person in the mind but not in morals is to educate a menace to society.

Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Building on Sand

Never, never pin your whole faith on any human being: not if he is the best and wisest in the whole world.  There are lots of nice things you can do with sand: but do not try building a house on it.

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, chapter 7

Monday, February 13, 2017


There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want, merely because you think it would be good for him.

Robert A. Heinlein

Sunday, February 12, 2017

We CAN Control Our Thoughts

Judeo-Christian principles insist that people have the ability to control not only their actions but even their thoughts.  And that, therefore, people are (and must be) accountable for their actions and thoughts. ...  While the modernist, particularly in the field of art, may consider unfettered and undisciplined thought to be just one step removed from genius, the Bible directs us to rein in our minds.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.253

Saturday, February 11, 2017

How Revolutionaries Play Victim

It is well to note in connection with the crackdown of revolutionaries of the appearance of a tactic that has often been used since by Communists, their sympathizers and fellow-travelers.  It is the device of taking attention away from Communist methods and violence by focusing attention on real or imagined wrongs done by those who oppose them.  To put it more bluntly, it is the device of turning revolutionaries into the victims and the prosecutors into aggressors.  This is accomplished by downplaying the purposes and methods of revolutionaries and focusing upon the allegedly unsavory tactics of those who act to contain and restrain them. Revolutionaries are portrayed as innocent advocates of unpopular ideas, beset by heavy-handed Yahoos. 

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Vol. 4: The Growth of America 1878-1928, pg.224-225