The fashionable cult of sexually mutilating and sterilizing children 0

Heavy pressure is brought to bear on schoolchildren to “change” their “gender”. It is a new and terrible fad on the political left. The authorities of whole school districts have policies to persuade children to “transgender” – by which they mean undergo drastic hormone treatment and physical mutilation – and to keep parents ignorant of the atrocity their children are subjected to.

In an article at Front Page, Danusha Goska gives examples of the appalling suffering of the victims of this cult of human vivisection.

Colleen [in adolescence] … paid a surgeon to snip off her nipples, resize them, and sew them back on.

After which they were insensate.

The surgeon was himself a man who identifies as a woman and a “trans activist” and had had body-altering surgery himself years before. … A man pretending to be a woman did that to a confused young girl. And we are told that if we use the word “mutilation” we are committing a hate crime. … Colleen began a campaign of public disclosures. Graphic sharing of her surgeries and sex life was a crusade to make the world a kinder, more loving place. The crusade featured leftwing economics. It is the fault of the unrighteous US government that girls have to pay out of pocket to have their nipples excised, resized, and sewn back on. In a new Utopia, such procedures would be “free”, that is, the taxpayer would foot the bill.

Colleen was a testifying evangelist; she was going door to door distributing a tract. The contents of her pamphlet were her nipples, her mastectomies, her vagina …

Later, one gathers (it is not explicitly stated) she underwent more surgery.

Colleen reported pain. Depression, confusion, unwanted changes to her body that she had been warned about but that she had refused, in her girl’s immature mind, to believe would actually happen to her after surgery and hormones. Colleen’s testimony worked to transubstantiate her pain into the blood of the martyrs that feeds the church. “Yes, this surgery, these drugs, these regrets, this confusion, these second thoughts, all hurt, physically and emotionally, but this pain is good because it is the pain the caterpillar feels when it transforms into a butterfly. As I report this pain to you, you are becoming more open to the trans future!” That sort of desperate spin. … [Some] young people want to suffer for a cause. Colleen’s literal blood, photographed post-op, was talismanic evidence of her salvific suffering for a worthy cause. Colleen’s audience seemed always to be her mother’s friends. Much older people, gray beards and solicitous old ladies struggling to be hip in a showy way, applauded a girl’s self-mutilation. “She’s teaching us.” …

There are many testimonies on the web that are not as religiously ecstatic as Colleen’s. …  A girl who identifies as a boy chooses a double mastectomy, which she dismissively labels “top surgery”.  She says she woke up with clothes and sheets covered with blood; she passed blood clots the size of a golf ball; her chest “collapsed into a black, hollow cavity; there was discolored tissue spilling out of it”.  A second surgery removed “a half a foot of dead, rotten tissue”.  “They gave me an extra large drain and I had to have it in for over three weeks.”

Dr. Sidhbh Gallagher, this girl’s surgeon, pushes her transgender mastectomies for children via aggressive TikTok videos.

Chloe Cole uses the word “butcher” for what doctors did to her young body. … She talks about not only losing her breasts to trans surgery at age 15, but also losing sensation in her entire chest. Cole says she almost immediately began to regret this loss. “I was so ashamed of myself. It was a hard thing to admit.” Through school, “I learned that breast feeding is one of the main ways that you bond with your kid. I never really thought about this before. I never really thought about being a parent, even. I was a kid when I consented to all this and I wasn’t really focused on things like that. Deep down I have a maternal instinct that wasn’t fostered because I was being socialized as a boy. I started to realize what was taken from me. I had no friends in real life by this time. My only friends were online. I said online that I regret my transition and I was met with a lot of hatred from transgender individuals.” Cole felt pressured to silence herself. …

In addition to regretting what they lost, many regret what they got. A man who identified as a woman and now identifies as a man calls himself “Shape Shifter”.  He received a surgically constructed, so-called “neo vagina” that makes sex impossible for him. Shape Shifter spoke for over an hour about his regrets. His interview is an open fire hydrant of medical crises, psychiatric complaints, and suicidal despair.

Scott Newgent, a woman who identified as a man, received phalloplasty, that is a surgically constructed artificial penis built out of the skin in her arm. She “suffered seven surgeries, a pulmonary embolism, an induced stress heart attack, sepsis, a 17-month recurring infection, 16 rounds of antibiotics, three weeks of daily IV antibiotics, arm reconstructive surgery, lung, heart and bladder damage … $1 million in medical expenses  …  I spent many nights in the bathroom in too much pain to even make it to the toilet, forced to urinate on the floor, screaming as what felt like razor blades left my body. …

Newgent explained that she cannot sue her surgeon because “there is no structured, tested or widely accepted baseline for transgender health care”. This reason for Newgent’s inability to sue gives the lie to Biden’s assistant secretary for health, Admiral Rachel Levine, MD, himself a man who identifies as a woman, who insists that there are such standards. “There is an evidence-based standard of care for the evaluation and treatment of trans individuals,” Levine insists.

Ritchie Herron’s surgeries [at an age not given] were paid for by Britain’s National Health Service. He says he was brainwashed by health care providers. He now has to spend a great deal of time attempting to go to the bathroom, and doing so causes great pain. He is incontinent and his entire groin is numb. “I am never going to be the same ever again. There is no reversal to this. Do not let anyone tell you that this can be reversed. It is criminal what they are doing to people.”

In October, 2022, Project Veritas released video from a WPATHGEI online conference. WPATHGEI is the World Professional Association for Transgender Health Global Education Institute. The video’s star is Dr. Daniel Metzger, …

Most suitably named is this Dr. Metzger!  “Metzger” is the German word for butcher.

… who participates in the medical transing of children. The name of this Canadian doctor’s program is Trans Youth CAN! The exclamation point is part of the program’s name. Dr. Metzger acknowledges that it’s virtually impossible to have a serious conversation with a fourteen year old about post-surgical regret. “Most of the kids are nowhere in any kind of a brain space to really talk about it in a serious way. I know I’m talking to a blank wall.” But, he says, “We want the kids to be happy. Happier in the moment, right?” Metzger acknowledges that he has been approached by former patients in their twenties who suddenly realize, and regret, that they cannot have children. “I don’t know what to do,” he says. He doesn’t know what to do. He has participated in making children sterile, to make them happy in the moment, and he doesn’t know what to do about that. …

In reality, no one ever “transgenders”. No one ever can. There are two only two sexes (“gender” is a grammatical term) and everyone remains the sex they were born no matter what is done to their bodies. A baby’s sex is not “assigned” to it, as the “transgender” fanatics claim; he or she is born male or female.

Though all the medical associations of the Western world are insistently for subjecting children to the torture of “transgendering”, there are doctors who are firmly against it

We are dealing with what may be the biggest medical and ethical scandal of modern times,” Dr. William Malone, a board-certified endocrinologist, said. “Transgender medicine is big business, and youth who are transitioning today will be medical patients for life, for the next 60-plus years.

“Transgendering” is enormously lucrative for doctors, particularly for surgeons. (Phalloplasty “can go as high as $150,000.00”)

And “transgendering” is a now a doctrine of Leftist ideology:

On Transgender Day of Visibility (sic!), Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) endorsed sex change procedures for children.

And the Judiciary supports the doctrine:

Judges Across The Country Have Denied Custody To Parents Who Refuse To Give Children “Transgender” Medical Treatments

What about religious leaders? Surely they are against this horror?

No:

Hundreds of religious leaders say they stand with transgender siblings who are being targeted by legislators around the country.

But those “legislators around the country” – they are trying to put a stop to the feverish campaign of cruelty, aren’t they? Surely the states won’t allow it?

Wrong. Many will.

Nineteen states are so much for it, they are  proposing to make laws to prevent anyone from trying to stop it. This how the enthusiasts for the practice word their virtuous support of it:

LGBTQ LAWMAKERS IN 19 STATES HAVE OR WILL INTRODUCE LAWS TO PROTECT TRANS KIDS FROM CIVIL AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES WHEN SEEKING GENDER-AFFIRMING CARE

How many more states will follow that lead?

Florida, under the governorship of Ron DeSantis, is against it.

The media report that story as a vicious wrong. They call the appalling procedure “gender-affirming care”:

The Florida Board of Medicine approved a rule Friday that bans minors from obtaining gender-affirming care—though it will still face additional steps before being adopted—overruling guidance from leading medical groups and making Florida the latest state to target healthcare for transgender residents.

So there are other states  “targeting” the atrocious practice.

What does the American public think about the issue?

One poll finds that –

The majority of Americans say transgender surgeries for minors should be illegal, newly released polling data shows, backing up a movement to ban the practice in states around the country.

And the report lists more states in which Republican legislators plan to “ban the practice”: Utah, Oklahoma, Michigan, Tennessee, Texas.

And, “Arkansas, Alabama, and Arizona have outlawed medical and surgical transitions in youth, with more such laws likely on the way.”

But Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin are all for the maiming of children and the ruin of their lives: Tax dollars from citizens of Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin are funneling into state university health programs that openly provide unproven hormonal injections shown to be exceptionally risky—including possible side effects of infertility, cancer, and death.

Indiana University’s Student Health Center, the University Health Services for University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the University of Illinois’ McKinley Center all provide hormonal injections for students and other services they claim are “gender-affirming care” without parental notification and often with great medical risk.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s “Informed Consent” form for receiving “feminizing hormones” contains several contradictions.

In the introduction, the form describes hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, as an “important component of transition” that “can greatly improve quality of life, psychological well-being, and affirm identity.” The form goes on to describe increased chances for migraines, decreased bone density, diabetes, infertility, cancer, and death. … The transgender health association suggests, in documents linked by Indiana University, that children as young as 2 years old begin showing gender dysphoria, and claims that children as young as 9 should be considered for hormone injections.

Any day now, the “Democratic” junta that governs the federation will surely unveil a statue of the Nazi doctor known as “the Angel of Death”.

He conducted medical experiments on thousands of pairs of twins, most of them children, at Auschwitz.

He placed victims in pressure chambers, injected them with drugs and lethal bacteria, castrated them, froze them to death, performed surgery on them without anesthesia, gave them sex changes, and amputated their limbs. And the majority of his victims were children.

His name was Dr. Josef Mengele.

Why is America inexorably becoming a socialist country? 0

In an article at American Greatness titled Wall Street Will Die, Theodore R. Malloch and Nicholas Capaldi write:

Something was radically different about the stock market in 2022, and it was not simply that it was a massively down year. A more profound change has occurred.

The entire economic system is focused on growth, and therefore is designed to bring together creative people who lack resources with people who have resources. This is the genius of the U.S. market economy.

Here is how the stock market used to work. It goes up and down but over time it always has gone up—it must go up, long term, or the whole system collapses. The way to prosperity is to buy and hold a diverse portfolio of value stocks. Trying to “read” the market short term is a risky business. … Buying and holding in a patient fashion over the long term has always been the way to prosperity.

As Friedrich Hayek explained long ago, the market economy is not a mechanical system that can be predicted. But you can bet that over time the market will go up because the entire economy is geared for growth. This means some general strategies will work well in the long term.

Most investors rely on wealth professionals and financial advisors. The professionals do not and cannot know which individual stocks will succeed. What they do know is how to read the tea leaves—charts, graphs, comparisons to earlier analogous situations, interviews with CEOs, studies of foreign governments and exchange rates, company ratings and valuations. This is old-fashioned inductive reasoning. Mostly they play follow-the-leader or follow-the-rising-star. Remember the number of salespeople on Wall Street far outnumbers the number of researchers. Following the stock market publications, like nearly all forms of journalism, has become a form of entertainment. Just think of Mad Jim Cramer. As long as we believe that the market, in general, will go up, the fun will last.

A second way of earning money is to sell short (culturally sometimes considered anti-American). Selling short still requires that somebody has to buy—somebody who still believes that the market is eventually going to go up. In bad times, hedge funds could manipulate the market by driving it up one day (we have been conditioned for optimism) and then selling it the next. This works as long as the public in general believes that the market will go up over time. No matter how bad things get, some hedge funds will thrive, will be in the news, and therefore contribute to the myth that there are experts who really know how to win and play the volatility.

When Republicans control the government, certain industries are favored because those industries support Republican candidates and policies. Favoring certain industries is compatible with and generally requires a healthy economy—otherwise the favored industries cannot sell their products or services.

When traditional Democrats controlled the government, a different set of industries was favored for the same kinds of reasons and with the same assumptions—namely, a robust economy helps favored economic interests, including labor. The political parties before now did not do much damage—what they did was skim the cream for their more influential constituents. There have been many years when having a Democrat in the White House was better for the stock market or for certain stocks.

In both cases, members of the government have inside information about how government regulation will create winners and losers. From time to time, parties will make mistakes (remember, nobody can really predict) and be voted out of office. Not to worry. The other party will eventually be in the same position, and each party gets another bite of the apple ad infinitum.

However, 2022 was a real disaster for the stock market. U.S. stocks had their worst year since 2008 (the final year of George W. Bush’s presidency).

The Dow Jones Industrial Average started at 36,585 and ended at 33,147. The S&P 500 started at 4,797 and ended at 3,840. The NASDAQ started at 15,832 and ended at 10,466.

The declines were 8.6 percent, 19 percent, and 33 percent respectively. There was no point in trying to buy on the dip because the dip had no clear bottom.

You see the overall context. What is different now? Well, the present Democratic Party is not interested primarily in skimming the cream. They want to kill and eat the cow, redistributing the scraps.

What market predictors sometimes forget is that the economic realm and the social realm are interconnected. They influence each other. In Joseph Schumpeter’s famous words, economic growth is a form of “creative destruction.” Economic growth or progress is accompanied not only by changes in economic institutions but by social change as well. Some of the latter are easily perceived as causes of social dislocation.

Republicans have been focused primarily on growth (liberty); Democrats, meanwhile, have focused on the (mal)distribution of wealth. There has always been a conflict between rival elites for the leadership of America: entrepreneurs (business leaders) versus professional politicians and bureaucrats and their academic allies who favor the therapeutic state.

What has changed is that Democrats are now prepared to sacrifice growth in favor of distribution (or what they call equality).

Actually, they prefer to use the term “equity”, by which they mean “equality of outcome”, ie. everyone being as poor as everyone else. Except themselves. They seem to believe that their own wealth will be unaffected, undiminished.

What the Democrats needed to be able to demand fundamental redistribution was the perception of a social problem so grave that it demanded total and permanent political control. COVID was the warm-up, and here we saw blue states sacrifice economic growth for the (mis)perception that mandatory masks and vaccines could overcome all viruses.

The present alleged permanent and overriding crisis is the environment (global warming, climate change, or whatever expression is popular this week). Survival of the human race does not depend upon or require infinite long-term growth according to this view. More to the point, survival may be incompatible with growth.

[Read or] reread The Limits to Growth, published in 1971 by the Club of Rome and based on a faulty MIT model, to review the argument. Many have been personally reassured by the current Jesuit Pope, as well as the autistic Swedish girl, Greta Thunberg, that it is not possible for the whole world to enjoy the lifestyle of the American middle class and that this standard must end.

The trick for the Democrats was to manufacture a crisis that requires or dictates permanent government intervention in the economy. Democrats have figured out how to win elections through mail-in ballots by registering, harvesting, and assisting hordes of people who never used to vote. The current base of the party consists of people who are the least likely to be invested in the stock market (African Americans, Hispanics, young people, single moms, and the poor). The worse the economy becomes, the more we seem to require a quick fix from government intervention (additional indexed benefits). Lack of growth will drive more people into the lower classes, and they, in turn, will vote routinely for Democrats.

Immigration is the icing on the cake. We can redefine “growth” so that there is always some form of (Orwellian) “growth.” Why not—we do this with everything else. Remember, Franklin Roosevelt was elected three times over 12 years without getting us out of the Great Depression before World War II saved his administration and reputation.

In an emergency, there is always the possibility of raising the national debt (the invisible form of taxation). We can always raise the national debt; Congress does it regularly. It stands at $31.4 trillion and is growing each year. We can always count on other countries to play follow the leader. We do not have to worry too much about the debt going up in the long term because the politicians of both parties who favored and voted for it will, by that time, be dead, even if the interest on the debt is itself a killer. Having a credit card without repayment is a convenient government course of action.

Welcome to the new normal.

Mind you, this is not just a temporary limit on economic growth. It is the end of the dream—and, as a consequence, the end of the stock market itself. Why invest if there is no chance to profit and see your investment grow? Wall Street does not want to admit it, but in a thoroughly socialist economy, there is no need or reason for stocks. Over time companies will cease to exist, the market will be dictated, and the state, through its regulatory bureaucracies, will control everything.

But why are the Lords of Commerce and Industry allowing this to happen? And not just allowing it, but promoting it with passionate enthusiasm?

Is it because they expect to be the government?

If not that, then what? How do they explain it to themselves?

Posted under Capitalism, Economics, Socialism by Jillian Becker on Sunday, January 22, 2023

Tagged with ,

This post has 0 comments.

Permalink

What happened to the American Republic? 1

Victor Davis Hanson asks vital questions that desperately need answers – but will get none.

He writes at Townhall:

Did someone or something seize control of the United States?

What happened to the U.S. border? Where did it go? Who erased it? Why and how did 5 million people enter our country illegally? Did Congress secretly repeal our immigration laws? Did Joe Biden issue an executive order allowing foreign nationals to walk across the border and reside in the United States as they pleased?

Since when did money not have to be paid back? Who insisted that the more dollars the federal government printed, the more prosperity would follow? When did America embrace zero interest? Why do we believe $30 trillion in debt is no big deal?

When did clean-burning, cheap, and abundant natural gas become the equivalent to dirty coal? How did prized natural gas that had granted America’s wishes of energy self-sufficiency, reduced pollution, and inexpensive electricity become almost overnight a pariah fuel whose extraction was a war against nature? Which lawmakers, which laws, which votes of the people declared natural gas development and pipelines near criminal?

Was it not against federal law to swarm the homes of Supreme Court justices, to picket and to intimidate their households in efforts to affect their rulings? How then with impunity did bullies surround the homes of Justices Brett Kavanaugh, Samuel Alito, Amy Coney Barrett, Neil Gorsuch, John Roberts, and Clarence Thomas—furious over a court decision on abortion? How could these mobs so easily throng our justices’ homes, with placards declaring “Off with their d—s”?

Since when did Americans create a government Ministry of Truth? And on whose orders did the FBI contract private news organizations to censor stories it did not like and writers whom it feared?

How did we wake up one morning to new customs of impeaching a president over a phone call? Of the speaker of the House tearing up the State of the Union address on national television? Of barring congressional members from serving on their assigned congressional committees?

When did we assume the FBI had the right to subvert the campaign of a candidate it disliked? Was it legal suddenly for one presidential candidate to hire a foreign ex-spy to subvert the campaign of her rival?

Was some state or federal law passed that allowed biological males to compete in female sports? Did Congress enact such a law? Did the Supreme Court guarantee that biological male students could shower in gym locker rooms with biological women? Were women ever asked to redefine the very sports they had championed?

When did the government pass a law depriving Americans of their freedom during a pandemic? In America can health officials simply cancel rental contracts or declare loan payments in suspension? How could it become illegal for mom-and-pop stores to sell flowers or shoes during a quarantine but not so for Walmart or Target?

Since when did the people decide that 70 percent of voters would not cast their ballots on Election Day? Was this revolutionary change the subject of a national debate, a heated congressional session, or the votes of dozens of state legislatures?

What happened to Election Night returns? Did the fact that Americans created more electronic ballots and computerized tallies make it take so much longer to tabulate the votes?

When did the nation abruptly decide that theft is not a crime, assault not a felony? How can thieves walk out with bags of stolen goods, without the wrath of angry shoppers, much less fear of the law?

Was there ever a national debate about the terrified flight from Afghanistan?  Who planned it and why?

What happened to the once trusted FBI? Why almost overnight did its directors decide to mislead Congress, to deceive judges with concocted tales from fake dossiers and with doctored writs? Did Congress pass a law that our federal leaders in the FBI or CIA could lie with impunity under oath?

Who redefined our military and with whose consent? Who proclaimed that our chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff could call his Chinese Communist counterpart to warn him that America’s president was supposedly unstable? Was it always true that retired generals routinely libeled their commander-in-chief as a near Nazi, a Mussolini, an adherent of the tools of Auschwitz?

Were Americans ever asked whether their universities could discriminate against their sons and daughters based on their race? How did it become physically dangerous to speak the truth on a campus? Whose idea was it to reboot racial segregation and bias as “theme houses,” “safe spaces,” and “diversity”? How did that happen in America?

How did a virus cancel the Constitution? Did the lockdowns rob of us of our sanity? Or was it the woke hysteria that ignited our collective madness?

We are beginning to wake up from a nightmare to a country we no longer recognize, and from a coup we never knew.

Perhaps there are answers to these questions of ours – or at least conjectures about probabilities:

Are “we”, as Hanson says, beginning to wake up?

Are there signs that the nightmare is over? If so, what are they?

They are hard to discern. The economy is worsening, sources of ample cheap energy are being abandoned, squadrons of new viruses are pouring out of China, the populations of the West are dying out and our countries are under increasing occupation by barbarians.

The United States is still governed by crooks, idiots, and freaks.

Is there any reason to expect change for the better?

 

The point of no return 3

.
.
.
.

James Hankins and Allen C. Guelzo … noted in the first chapter of Where Next?: Civilization at the Crossroads thatCivilization is always threatened by barbarism, and the greater threat often comes more from within than from without.”

The political philosopher James Burnham made a similar point when he argued thatSuicide is probably more frequent than murder as the end phase of a civilization.”

The historian Arnold Toynbee spoke in this context of the “barbarization of the dominant minority.” When a society is robust and self-confident, Toynbee suggested, cultural influence travels largely from the elites to the proletariats. The elites furnish social models to be emulated. The proletariats are “softened,” Toynbee said, by their imitation of the manners and morals of a dominant elite. But when a society begins to falter, the imitation proceeds largely in the opposite direction: the dominant elite is coarsened by its imitation of proletarian manners. Toynbee spoke in this context of a growing “sense of drift,” “truancy,” “promiscuity,” and general “vulgarization” of manners, morals, and the arts. The elites, instead of holding fast to their own standards, suddenly begin to “go native” and adopt the dress, attitudes, and behavior of the lower classes. Flip on your television, scroll through social media, look at the teens and pre-teens in your middle-class neighborhood. You will see what Toynbee meant by “barbarization of the dominant [or, rather ‘once-dominant’] minority.” One part of the impulse is summed up in the French phrase nostalgie de la boue. But it is not “mud” that is sought so much as repudiation. …

What we are talking about is the drift, the tendency of our culture. And that is to be measured not so much by what we permit or forbid as by what we unthinkingly accept as normal. This crossroads, that is to say, is part of a process, one of whose markers is the normalization of the outré.  Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan described this development as “defining deviancy down.” It is, as the late columnist Charles Krauthammer observed, a two-way process. “As part of the vast social project of moral leveling,” he wrote, it is not enough for the deviant to be normalized. The normal must be found to be deviant. . . . Large areas of ordinary behavior hitherto considered benign have had their threshold radically redefined up, so that once innocent behavior now stands condemned as deviant. Normal middle-class life then stands exposed as the true home of violence and abuse and a whole catalog of aberrant acting and thinking.”

Hilaire Belloc espied the culmination of this process in Survivals and New Arrivals (1929):

When it is mature we shall have, not the present isolated, self-conscious insults to beauty and right living, but a positive coordination and organized affirmation of the repulsive and the vile.” …

Jean Raspail’s Camp of the Saints (1973) … imagines a world in which Western Civilization is overrun and destroyed by unfettered Third-World immigration. It describes an instance of wholesale cultural suicide … Conspicuous in that apocalypse is the feckless collusion of white Europeans and Americans in their own supersession. They faced an existential crossroads. They chose extinction, laced with the emotion of higher virtue, rather than survival. …

In 1994, Irving Kristol wrote an important essay called Countercultures. In it, he noted that “‘Sexual liberation’ is always near the top of a countercultural agenda—though just what form the liberation takes can and does vary, sometimes quite widely.” The costumes and rhetoric change, but the end is always the same: an assault on the defining institutions of our civilization. “Women’s liberation,” Kristol continues, “is another consistent feature of all countercultural movements—liberation from husbands, liberation from children, liberation from family. Indeed, the real object of these various sexual heterodoxies is to disestablish the family as the central institution of human society, the citadel of orthodoxy.”

In Eros and Civilization (1966), the Marxist countercultural guru Herbert Marcuse provided an illustration of Kristol’s thesis avant la lettre. Railing against “the tyranny of procreative sexuality,” Marcuse urged his followers to return to a state of “primary narcissism” and extolled the joys of “polymorphous perversity.” Are we there yet?  … Marcuse sought to enlist a programmatically unfruitful sexuality in his campaign against “capitalism” and the cultural establishment: barrenness as a revolutionary desideratum. Back then, the diktat seemed radical but self-contained, another crackpot effusion from the academy. Today, it is a widespread mental health problem, accepted gospel preached by teachers, the media, and legislators across the country. As I write, the National Women’s Law Center has just taken to Twitter to declare that “People of all genders need abortions.” How many things had to go wrong for someone, presumably female, to issue that bulletin? “All genders,” indeed. I recall the observation, attributed to Voltaire, “Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”

In The Catholic Tradition and the Modern State”(1916), the historian Christopher Dawson wrote, “It is not liberty, but power which is the true note of our modern civilization. Man has gained infinitely in his control over Nature, but he has lost control over his own individual life.” I think this is true. And there is a political as well as a technical or scientific dimension to the phenomenon Dawson describes.

[It may be true, but the underlined sentence is annoyingly badly written. When “Man” is used  as a generic term, “he” cannot be said to have an “individual life”. A better formulation of the idea Dawson is trying to express: Humankind has gained greatly in control over Nature, but individuals have lost control over their own lives.]

In the West, what we have witnessed since the so-called “Progressive” movement of the 1910s and 1920s is the rise of a bureaucratic elite that has increasingly absorbed the prerogatives of power from legislative bodies. In the United States, for example, Article I of the Constitution vests all legislative power in Congress. For many decades, however, Americans have been ruled less by laws duly enacted by their representatives in Congress and more by an alphabet soup of regulatory agencies. The members of these bodies are elected by no one; they typically work outside the purview of public scrutiny; and yet their diktats have the force of law. Already in the 1940s, James Burnham was warning about the prospect of a “managerial revolution” that would accomplish by bureaucracy what traditional politics had failed to produce. Succeeding decades have seen the extraordinary growth of this leviathan, the unchecked multiplication of its offices and powers, and the encroaching reach of its tentacles into the interstices of everyday life. We are now, to an extent difficult to calculate, ruled by this “administrative state”, the “deep state”,  the “regulatory state”.

When in September 2020 the World Economic Forum at Davos announced its blueprint for a “Great Reset” in the wake of the worldwide panic over COVID-19, a new crossroads had been uncovered. Never letting a crisis go to waste, the Davos initiative was an extensive menu of progressive, i.e., socialistic imperatives. Here at last was an opportunity to enact a worldwide tax on wealth, a far-reaching (and deeply impoverishing) “green energy” agenda, rules that would dilute national sovereignty, and various schemes to insinuate politically correct attitudes into the fabric of everyday life. All this was being promulgated for our own good, of course. But it was difficult to overlook the fact that the WEF plan involved nothing less than the absorption of liberty by the extension of bureaucratic power.

Kimball’s idea is that we are now  at a point – a “crossroads”, or a fork in the road – where we have a choice to make: restore and preserve Western civilization, OR let it die.

I do not think we have that choice. “The drift, the tendency of our culture” has gone too far in the direction of “the repulsive and the vile” to be stemmed and diverted back to “right living”. Western Civilization  has been “overrun and destroyed by unfettered [unobstructed] Third-World immigration”.

We are at – we have have passed the point of no return.

 

Jillian Becker    December 12, 2022

Do you remember the American Republic? 9

Do you remember the USA, the nation that was established by a constitution?

Perhaps you imagine it is still in existence?

It is not.

Glenn Ellmers describes the post-constitutional republic that America has become. He writes at American Greatness:

The constitutional republic created by our founders no longer exists. Most everyone on the Right seems to agree with that—though we differ about how deep the rot is, and whether we are now living under a new regime that is essentially different in kind, not merely degree.

Most of us also agree that we want to restore the American founders’ principles and institutions. …

But how exactly we recover the founders’ constitutionalism is a question no one has been able to answer with any specificity. …

Elections—and therefore consent and popular sovereignty—are no longer meaningful.

This is the big one, and in a way, everything flows from it. It is helpful to break it down into two discrete pieces.

First, even if conducted legitimately, elections no longer reflect the will of the people.

Set aside for the moment any concerns about outright fraud and ballot tampering. The steady growth of the administrative state since the 1960s means that bureaucracy has become increasingly indifferent to—even openly hostile to—the will of the people over the last half-century. A clear majority of Americans, including Democrats (at least until recently), has been demanding and voting for comprehensive immigration reform, including strict control of the border, for decades. The Republican establishment in Congress—which made its peace with the deep state some time ago—has made numerous promises to fix this problem, and broken them all, always finding a reason for “amnesty now, enforcement later.” The decision about who gets to be part of the political community was the basic principle of popular sovereignty in the founders’ social compact theory. To the degree that the elites have simply ignored the American people on this point, neither the United States as a nation nor its citizens can still be considered a sovereign people.

Of course, that is only one obvious example. In thousands of other ways, the federal bureaucracy ignores the deliberate wishes of the American people. The regulators, administrators, and policymakers in the alphabet soup of federal agencies set the rules and impose their collective will as they see fit. Regardless of who the people repeatedly elect to reform the system, those politicians and their agendas come and go; the permanent government persists.

Yet even this has not been enough for the leftist oligarchy. Trump’s election in 2016 scared the establishment into taking even more extreme measures to prevent “unacceptable” electoral outcomes. Which leads to the latest antidemocratic development.

Second, elections now represent “manufactured consent”.

Mollie Hemingway showed in her excellent book, Rigged, that the technically legal though unscrupulous maneuvers undertaken by the Left—including legacy and social media propaganda and censorship, last-minute changes to election laws, and private money poured into partisan “voter education” efforts—were more than enough to alter the outcome of the 2020 election.

This new reality became even clearer this month. The highly manipulative practice of ballot harvesting—which reached new lows of cynicism in the recent midterms—makes a mockery of elections as an expression of popular deliberation and rational will. … The Democrats didn’t beat back the red wave because the voters chose them; they won by choosing their voters. It is hard to see how elections under these circumstances are substantially different from the artificial voting rituals practiced by the “people’s republics”, i.e., communist regimes of the 20th century.

The idea that the founders’ institutional arrangements still obtain is a nostalgic fiction today—especially the idea of checks and balances based on federalism and the separation of powers.

As a treatise on constitutional government, The Federalist is and will always be a classic work of political science, with many enduring insights. … [But] what Publius describes about the functions of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches—as well as the countervailing powers of the states—has almost no connection with current reality.

Congress doesn’t write, the executive does not enforce, and the judiciary does not interpret the laws. Power and wealth have become massively centralized in Washington, D.C. Federalism, judicial review, executive authority, the legislative process, appropriations—none of this remains operational in a way James Madison would recognize. And now, the country’s most powerful corporations are in active collusion with the federal security apparatus to enforce the regime’s authority. That’s practically the definition of fascism.

Political competence, in the traditional sense, is becoming irrelevant. 

Ignore the current spat between Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis. A bitter nomination fight would only benefit the opposition. What’s important to note is that any attempt by a Republican president to control his own (nominal) employees in the executive branch would require talents that neither Trump nor DeSantis has demonstrated. In fact, if confronting today’s administrative state, it isn’t clear how even a Lincoln or a Churchill would have exercised effective statesmanship. We are in a post-constitutional, even a post-political, environment.

For all his flaws, Donald Trump at least recognized that defending the sovereignty of the people (the most fundamental and meaningful definition of Americanism) meant striking at the legitimacy of the administrative state, especially its assumptions of rational expert knowledge. Trump correctly perceived that mockery and derision were effective, if indelicate, tools for challenging this hubris.

But Trump erred grievously in thinking he could accomplish everything he wanted on his own. The art of the deal doesn’t work when the other side holds almost all the cards. Trump underestimated this situation. And he was simply foolish and vain in thinking he could overcome it on the strength of his abilities alone and ignoring his duty to fill every available appointment with people loyal to—and willing to fight for—his agenda.

A DeSantis presidency, meanwhile, would have to recognize that while executive experience as a governor was once the ideal training ground for the Oval Office, this is much less true today. To whatever degree overweening bureaucracy has infiltrated the states, the governor of Florida does not have to deal with a national security machine that sets its own foreign policy, abuses classification rules, and engages in shameless leaking to a compliant national press; a Justice Department that weaponizes the resources and capacities of the FBI to undermine an elected president; and a veritable nation of unfireable (for now) subordinates long habituated to regarding themselves as the true representatives of the public will.

Yet DeSantis has shown better instincts than Trump in backing up his words with actions, especially in his willingness to punish powerful opponents, like Disney, when they needed it.

It remains to be seen how either man could translate his virtues, and overcome his shortcomings, to exercise the power of the presidency creatively, with cunning, subtlety, and ruthless determination, in ways that pursue the goals of constitutionalism even while understanding that the old forms no longer apply.

Moreover, any president seeking to restore constitutional government would need large majorities in both houses of Congress committed to reform far more seriously than the current Republican leadership seems to be. This partnership would not involve traditional legislative log-rolling, but would require an alliance in a quasi-political street fight, probably leading to a constitutional crisis, to bring the bureaucracy to heel. It is a big ask to expect congressional leaders who would even understand how this would occur, let alone have the will actually to do it. Massive challenges await at every turn. …

By carrying on with retail politics and accepting the current situation as normal, people on the Right are now legitimizing and strengthening their enemies. 

This may be the hardest pill to swallow.

Our current woke oligarchy becomes more fanatical every month, yet instead of getting weaker or provoking a popular backlash, it seems to grow ever stronger. In part, this is because the elites have maintained a semblance of institutional normalcy. No matter how extreme its policies—COVID lockdowns, chemical or surgical castration of children, open borders—the ruling class carries on with a kind of constitutional kabuki theater. Citizens (or rather “people”) vote, Congress meets and passes “laws”, the president pontificates and signs documents. It is largely just a performance; it certainly doesn’t resemble government functioning as the founders intended. But it looks close enough to the real thing to persuade many people that the situation, if not perfect, is at least tolerable. There is just enough veneer of Our Democracy™ to keep most citizens from acting on their dissatisfactions and justified fears.

But the longer this goes on, and the more phoniness people are willing to tolerate, the more the whole rotten edifice becomes accepted as legitimate. At some point, the people will have consented, by their acquiescence, to anything the regime decides to do. Soon, one suspects, our left-wing masters won’t find it necessary to keep up the charade.

That’s why I disagree with those who say we should simply go tit-for-tat with the Democrats. Julie Kelly and Scott McKay, among others, believe that Republicans need to adopt the Democrats’ ballot harvesting techniques in order to beat them at their own game. In the same vein, Ned Ryun argues, “If conservatives and Republicans want to win again, we had better adopt the only-ballots-matter approach at least in the short term or die. . . . This is now the modern-day political battlefield in America, the rules of the game. One can either howl at the moon about it or beat the Left at it.”

Look, I get it. Nevertheless, this strikes me as a bad idea—practically, theoretically, and morally.

    • Practically, we can never hope to match the maniacal zeal of the Left, which invests millenarian expectations in politics, and is thus always driven to do whatever it takes to win. Acknowledging this does not mean giving up and letting them win. But it does mean recognizing that in a race to the bottom, the Left will always get there first. And having fought tooth and nail to see who can go lower, what do we do when we reach the bottom?
    • Theoretically, this means we will be participating in altering the essential meaning and purpose of elections. Representative, deliberative democracy will become the technocratic accumulation of votes—a clickbait contest that rewards whichever side can best wage computerized demographic warfare.
    • Morally, we will then lose any claim that we are trying to recover genuine self-government. If the argument is that we need to descend to the Democrats’ level in order to gain power, one might ask, “Why not just cut to the chase and skip the empty, meaningless process?” If power really becomes the only object, and neither side really believes in consent, then the entire pretense will fade away soon enough anyway.

Accepting, even “in the short term”, the regime’s authority to perpetually rewrite the rules of the game is the true surrender. They will always win if we repeatedly acquiesce to their legitimacy, chasing after what they define as normal on their terms. Worse, there won’t be a republic in the long term worth having.

I know that what I am painting here is a pretty bleak picture. But while it reveals a rough road in the short term, I don’t think it necessarily dictates long-term despair, in part because there are certain truths about political life that the Left cannot change.

Ellmers then “offer[s] some ideas about what has not changed, which might provide some grounds for optimism”, including “human nature”! But with that section of his article I disagree. I don’t think human nature or anything else he points to provides grounds for optimism.  Quite the contrary.

Spokesman of our ruin 1

(From New English Review, November 2022)

It is not easy to make out what Slavoj Zizek means to say. While he comments interminably on everything under the sun, he is barely intelligible. Yet, paradoxically, it is he who makes plain what we urgently need to know about our bewildering and frightening world: that our world is meant to be bewildering and frightening.

At home in Slovenia, where he lives on state welfare support, he is no more than a senior researcher at the University of Ljubljana’s Institute of Sociology, but further west he is more highly valued. He is a professor at the European Graduate School and international director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities at the University of London. Despite the extreme hostility he expresses towards the United States—or because of it—he is Global Distinguished Professor of German at New York University and has been a visiting professor at Princeton and numerous other American universities including Chicago, Columbia, Minnesota, Michigan, and UC Irvine. His many prestigious appointments, TV and speaker engagements must bring him a respectable income, but it is apparently not enough for quality replacements of the slovenly T-shirts he habitually wears and continually tweaks and plucks as if for relief from discomfort.

He ran for the presidency of Slovenia in 1990, unsuccessfully. He does not, however, need to be active as a politician to have a political effect. He is one of those intellectuals whose pernicious influence on fellow academics, and consequently on rising generations of students, do profound harm by denigrating freedom and commending tyranny. Typically, he derives pleasure from rebelling and shocking, in the irresponsible spirit of adolescence, though he is now seventy-three years old. His fans applaud him with the hideous glee of spoilt children. He is the darling of television chat shows and organs of the left such as The Guardian newspaper and the New Yorker. A characteristic “look at me how daring I am” statement he made on TV in New York was: “Everybody in the world except US citizens should be allowed to elect the American government.”

In the style of the enfant terrible, he likes to shock by inverting conventional values. What to most of us is good he denounces as bad, what is abhorred he praises as good. This, to his admirers, proves him witty, brave, original and profound. What he really is, is an intellectual clown, partly by intention (he does have a sense of humor) but compulsively anyway because that is his nature. He is uncouth, uncivil—again most likely by both will and character. “Do you want some f*cking  fruit-juice?” he asks an interviewer in a video.

When he appears personally before an audience or a camera he is entertaining, even fascinating. He creates an atmosphere of excitement and drama, which makes him a popular participant in panel discussions. He waffles and rambles with magisterial conviction. The word “precisely” crops up repeatedly in his imprecise statements like a decorative motif. He gestures, he snuffles; he swipes and pulls his nose again and again as if it is from there that he derives his ideas and it is his nose that is the paradigmatic philosopher of the age. Audiences are charmed, so they allow him his arrogance, his show-off iconoclasm.

When he is read rather than watched and heard, his reckless assertions are less likely to be indulged—if they can be deciphered. He writes in the customary opaque language of the left. For example: “To put it simply [sic]: If we make an abstraction, if we subtract all the richness of the different modes of subjectivization, all the fullness of experience present in the way individuals are ‘living’ their subject-positions, what remains is an empty place which was filled with this richness; this original void, this lack of symbolic structure, is the subject.” [1]

The only meaning I can extract from this is that if you take everything out of something, it will be empty. For this we need a philosopher?

He declares himself to be a communist. His heroes are Marx, Hegel, and Lenin. He acknowledges the intellectual influence of Jacques Lacan and Michel Foucault. Their repulsive ideas, enthusiastically endorsed and handed on by academics in America, were given a new lease of life by late-comer Zizek, whose country had been sleeping for decades under the spell of communism. Most East Europeans woke happily in the dawn of freedom after the fall of the Soviet Union, and many of them brought new vigor to the decadent spirit of the West. But here comes one who lived under the oppression of communism and yet is nostalgic for it; who idealizes cruelty and suffering; who abominates freedom—while making use of it to build a lucrative reputation as its implacable enemy.

His stardom among leftist academic peers is due to his wishing even worse evils upon us than did Lacan, whose psychoanalytic therapy consisted of trying to drive his patients insane; or Foucault, who wrote of “the joy of torture,” longed to carry out human sacrifice, and taught that cruelty should be a perpetual condition of existence, so that life would be the experience of unmitigated pain, hate and aggression. Zizek praises extreme sadism, terrorism, motiveless murder, and delights in crime. Only crime, he declares, is “authentically ethical” because it subverts the coercion of law. He revels in the suffering of other people, so the more horrific the crime is, the more pleasure it gives him. He adores suicide bombing. He loved the planes crashing into the Twin Towers on 9/11; they gave him an aesthetic thrill. America he calls “the enemy.” Anyone—any state, any terrorist, any traitor—who acts against America is laudable. (While he maintains that torture is good, he reviles the American soldiers who—he says—tortured Iraqi military prisoners at Abu Ghraib.) He wants all people everywhere to live in fearful obedience to totalitarian despotism. Voluntary subordination to an “authentic Leader,” he preaches, is “the highest act of freedom. [2] So if you are free, the best use you can make of your freedom is to choose to be unfree.

Most political philosophers on the left now perceive Western civilization not as a protector of liberty but as a patriarchal tyranny. They want us to believe that they are humane revolutionaries; that the subversion they applaud, the insurrection they encourage, the injustice they excuse, are to liberate the wretched of the earth: the enslaved, the oppressed, the poor, the colonized, the dispossessed, the persecuted; slaves, workers, women, lunatics, prisoners, aborigines … They want us to trust that they are striving for the eventual freedom, prosperity and happiness of the entire human race; that their apparent heartlessness is disguised compassion. Schools and universities teach their ideology with its utopian claim, and generations grow up believing in it. So Europe lets itself be invaded by Islam; the Biden administration permits black racists and their white abettors to riot and burn and murder in American cities for months on end; the Greens impose impoverishing conditions; universities oppose free speech.

Slavoj Zizek neither offers nor predicts utopia. He is volubly against freedom, prosperity, and happiness. He wants us all to be in perpetual anguish. He wants us to be in chains. He propounds atrocious ideals of subjugation and suffering without end. And the universities embrace him for it.

“Don’t take him seriously. You know he is a clown. He doesn’t really mean it,” his apologists may say. But we must take him seriously, because Zizek the Clown is the spokesman of our ruin.

 

Notes

[1] The Sublime Object of Ideology by Slavoj Zizek, Verso, London 1989, pp.174-175
[2] Did Somebody say Totalitarianism? Five Interventions on the (Mis)use of a Notion by Slavoj Zizek, Verso, London 2001, pp.246-247

 

Jillian Becker

 

Two nations: the disunited state of America 1

The weak showing of the Republican Party in the recent elections [November 8, 2022] should not have come as the shock that it did. Because the elections confirmed what all the world knows: there is a chasm between Left and Right in America.

Kurt Schlichter writes at Townhall:

Much of America is more liberal than we want to accept, and a whole lot of Americans are willing to tolerate the garbage policies Democrats push. Some people just don’t want freedom – they liked the COVID crap and support woke fascism. There are a lot of these people, though not in Florida, and liberals are gonna liberal no matter how poor and miserable that makes them and everyone else.

As he says, there are a lot of these people. Apparently half the electorate. Which means there are now TWO NATIONS between sea and shining sea.

Trump is being blamed not only by the Left which routinely blames him for everything but by disappointed Republicans for choosing and supporting bad candidates.

Trump certainly should own the losses of the candidates he pushed in the primaries … just as he takes the accolades for the ones who won. … There’s no sugarcoating it – Trump was a huge loser yesterday.

Yet at the same time it’s widely acknowledged that the quality of candidates doesn’t matter.

They say candidates matter, of course, but how much do they really? The fact is that Pennsylvania elected a bizarre ogre.
Here’s the thing – party allegiance is enduring in ways it never used to be. That Fetterman won is an indicator. You vote for that freak of nature only if you are purely partisan. … Appeals pointing out the fact that Fetterman is a mutant did not get it done. Sure he’s a mutant, they thought, but he’s our mutant.

Yes, because Americans are divided, and between the two sides there is an unbridgeable chasm.

Posted under United States by Jillian Becker on Thursday, November 10, 2022

Tagged with , , , ,

This post has 1 comment.

Permalink

President Trump is the only great leader of our time 4

No one but Donald Trump can save America and the world.

It is lucky for America and the world that he exists. He is our last chance. If the power of the presidency is withheld from him a second time, it will be one of the great tragedies of history.

Some Republican pundits say that Governor Ron DeSantis should be the GOP’s candidate for the presidency in 2024 rather than Donald Trump. They are wrong. DeSantis is conservative and competent, but he is not a political genius. Donald Trump is a political genius.

Paul Ingrassia writes at American Greatness:

When it becomes safe to take a position on a once controversial issue (i.e., wokeism), only then will DeSantis latch on. Compare this with Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign rhetoric about locking up illegals; forcing Mexico to pay for the wall; locking up Hillary Clinton for her corruption; implementing a complete and total shutdown of all Muslim immigration until we figure out what the hell is going on. These statements were powerful, and memorable, because the ideas behind them were not circulating until the words flowed from Trump’s lips. He alone was responsible for moving the Overton Window on these questions.

Trump remains the only candidate who does not frame himself in reaction to an existing agenda, but proactively sets the agenda himself. For all his fame, DeSantis is still but an offspring of the MAGA movement. If DeSantis were truly a kingmaker, he would have launched an attack on the Republican establishment, deeming Biden part of an illegitimate establishment, and explicitly called on both Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to step down to pave the way for better leaders. Figuring himself a would-be presidential candidate, DeSantis would break ranks with his party and attack the national security state head-on, calling for a negotiated settlement with Vladimir Putin. He would expel from state borders any federal agents who willfully circumvent due process and raid the homes of political adversaries with impunity. DeSantis would also recognize the gravity of the political moment, if he were worthy of the title, and make sure that his and President Trump’s interests were perfectly in line. Deference to Trump should be expected out of respect for what DeSantis owes to him and out of recognition that the state of the country depends on these two men operating in sync. …

The Grand Old Party would have gone the way of the Whigs had Trump not risen to the occasion in 2015 and taken that ride down the escalator. It is only proper now that Republicans, DeSantis included, put to one side any reservations they harbor about Trump, and in humility support the only man who made American Greatness the center of his movement.

And Matthew Boyle at Breitbart writes:

Former President Donald Trump told Breitbart News that conservative victories in Brazil, Italy, Sweden, Hungary, and more are proof that the “great movement” he leads is spreading worldwide.

“The whole thing is a great movement that’s taken place and now it’s happening all over the world,” Trump said … “It’s a very simple movement: Give us borders, give us safe streets, we don’t want crime, give us good education, give us dignity and give us respect as a nation. It’s not complicated.”

Asked if he thinks these global wins against globalism are foreshadowing a looming American victory against globalism, like what happened in 2016, Trump said, “I think it is.”

“They saw what happened to me, they saw what happened to our country and now they’re comparing it to what’s happening with the Biden administration,” Trump said. “We had no inflation. We had the hottest economy ever in the history of the world prior to the virus coming in. Then I built it back up a second time. The stock market was higher than just before the virus coming in. They saw what we did and they saw the movement. It really became big. We started it—and it became very big. It’s happening here again. It’s happening now again because people see the results of the open borders and the stupidity taking place, the crime. All of the things that are happening in our country, other countries are watching.”

Trump [in his interview with Breitbart News] noted correctly that his domestic endorsement record “was close to 99 percent in the primaries and we’ll do great in the general elections too” …

The Republican Party is largely Trumpean now.

Trump has also been getting active in international endorsements, first helping deliver a victory earlier this year to Hungary’s Viktor Orbán and helping Bolsonaro in Brazil. …

Americans who see the world like he does, Trump added, “should be excited” as they are watching this play out around the world.

“It’s a great thing and it’s a great tribute to common sense—not only conservatism but just common sense,” Trump said. “A lot of what we do and what we preach and what we believe in is common sense.”

President Trump can save America. And by doing so, he would save the Western world.

If his Party wins both the House and the Senate in the coming elections – which it is likely to do – hope for our civilization will revive.

Posted under Brazil, Capitalism, Conservatism, Hungary, Italy, Sweden, United States by Jillian Becker on Monday, October 31, 2022

Tagged with , , , ,

This post has 4 comments.

Permalink

Do conservatives need to change into radical revolutionaries? 6

Are American conservatives trying to conserve what no longer exists?

John Daniel Davidson, writing at The Federalist, declares that to be the case.

His article is titled We Need To Stop Calling Ourselves Conservatives. Why? Because “the conservative project has failed, and conservatives need to forge a new political identity that reflects our revolutionary moment”.

He argues that –

Conservatives have long defined their politics in terms of what they wish to conserve or preserve — individual rights, family values, religious freedom, and so on. Conservatives, we are told, want to preserve the rich traditions and civilizational achievements of the past, pass them on to the next generation, and defend them from the left. In America, conservatives and classical liberals alike rightly believe an ascendent left wants to dismantle our constitutional system and transform America into a woke dystopia. The task of conservatives, going back many decades now, has been to stop them.

In an earlier era, this made sense. There was much to conserve. But any honest appraisal of our situation today renders such a definition absurd. After all, what have conservatives succeeded in conserving? In just my lifetime, they have lost much: marriage as it has been understood for thousands of years, the First Amendment, any semblance of control over our borders, a fundamental distinction between men and women, and, especially of late, the basic rule of law. …

He maintains that “conservatism used to be about maintaining traditions and preserving Western civilization as a living and vibrant thing” but “Western civilization is dying” – is effectively already dead, and “you cannot preserve or defend something that is dead”.

The traditions and practices that conservatives champion are, at best, being preserved only in an ever-shrinking private sphere. At worst, they are being trampled to dust. They certainly do not form the basis of our common culture or civic life, as they did for most of our nation’s history. …

So what kind of politics should conservatives today, as inheritors of a failed movement, adopt? For starters, they should stop thinking of themselves as conservatives (much less as Republicans) and start thinking of themselves as radicals, restorationists, and counterrevolutionaries. Indeed, that is what they are, whether they embrace those labels or not.

He recalls Thomas Jefferson’s assertion that “periodic revolution to preserve liberty and civil society has always been and always will be necessary”.

He is  convinced that it is necessary now.

The imperative that conservatives must break from the past and forge a new political identity cannot be overstated. It is time now for something new, for a new way of thinking and speaking about what conservative politics should be.

He dates “the end of  Republican politics as we knew it” from the election of Donald Trump to the presidency in 2016. That event “heralded a populist wave and … we are in uncharted waters”. He does not see Trump’s populism as a solution to the terrible change that the West has undergone.

Put bluntly, if conservatives want to save the country they are going to have to rebuild and in a sense re-found it, and that means getting used to the idea of wielding power, not despising it. Why? Because accommodation or compromise with the left is impossible. …

The left will only stop when conservatives stop them, which means conservatives will have to discard outdated and irrelevant notions about “small government.” The government will have to become, in the hands of conservatives, an instrument of renewal in American life — and in some cases, a blunt instrument indeed.

To stop Big Tech, for example, will require using antitrust powers to break up the largest Silicon Valley firms. To stop universities from spreading poisonous ideologies will require state legislatures to starve them of public funds. To stop the disintegration of the family might require reversing the travesty of no-fault divorce, combined with generous subsidies for families with small children. Conservatives need not shy away from making these arguments because they betray some cherished libertarian fantasy about free markets and small government. It is time to clear our minds of cant.

In other contexts, wielding government power will mean a dramatic expansion of the criminal code. It will not be enough, for example, to reach an accommodation with the abortion regime, to agree on “reasonable limits” on when unborn human life can be snuffed out with impunity. As Abraham Lincoln once said of slavery, we must become all one thing or all the other. The Dobbs decision was in a sense the end of the beginning of the pro-life cause. Now comes the real fight, in state houses across the country, to outlaw completely the barbaric practice of killing the unborn.

Conservatives had better be ready for it, and Republican politicians, if they want to stay in office, had better have an answer ready when they are asked what reasonable limits to abortion restrictions they would support. The answer is: none, for the same reason they would not support reasonable limits to restrictions on premeditated murder.

On the transgender question, conservatives will …  need to get comfortable saying … that Drag Queen Story Hour should be outlawed; that parents who take their kids to drag shows should be arrested and charged with child abuse; that doctors who perform so-called “gender-affirming” interventions should be thrown in prison and have their medical licenses revoked; and that teachers who expose their students to sexually explicit material should not just be fired but be criminally prosecuted.

If all that sounds radical, fine. It need not, at this late hour, dissuade conservatives in the least. Radicalism is precisely the approach needed now because the necessary task is nothing less than radical and revolutionary.

To those who worry that power corrupts, and that once the right seizes power it too will be corrupted, they certainly have a point. If conservatives manage to save the country and rebuild our institutions, will they ever relinquish power and go the way of Cincinnatus? It is a fair question, and we should attend to it with care after we have won the war.

For now, there are only two paths open to conservatives. Either they awake from decades of slumber to reclaim and re-found what has been lost, or they will watch our civilization die. There is no third road.

While it would not be hard to make a confirming case that “marriage as it has been understood for thousands of years, the First Amendment, any semblance of control over our borders, a fundamental distinction between men and women, and, especially of late, the basic rule of law” are “lost”; and “that Drag Queen Story Hour should be outlawed; that parents who take their kids to drag shows should be arrested and charged with child abuse; that doctors who perform so-called ‘gender-affirming’ interventions should be thrown in prison and have their medical licenses revoked; and that teachers who expose their students to sexually explicit material should not just be fired but be criminally prosecuted”, other assertions of his need more examination.

Is Western civilization effectively dead?

Is the idea of small government outdated and irrelevant?

Is the idea of a free market economy nothing more than an unrealizable “cherished fantasy”?

Should divorce be made harder?

Should abortion be totally forbidden in all circumstances?

Above all, if conservatives “awake from decades of slumber to reclaim and re-found what has been lost” will the strong exercise of political power – which he recommends as the remedy – be enough to resuscitate Western civilization?

If it is too late for traditional conservatism to recover the values that have been discarded, would authoritarian government be a new development of Western civilization or would it be a replacement of it with its opposite – Oriental style, Chinese Communist Party style, dictatorship?

If that is the only way to re-establish the rule of law, be rid of same-sex “marriage”, restore the efficacy of the First Amendment, re-seal our borders, save children from forced mutilation and sterilization for the profit of doctors and from racist indoctrination by teachers, then yes, Western civilization is already dead.

There is no third choice between liberty and tyranny.   

Against religion 8

“When one person suffers from a delusion it is called insanity.

When many people suffer from a delusion it is called Religion.”

– Robert M. Pirsig

=================================

“Seeing no reason to believe is sufficient reason not to believe.”

– Karl Popper

================================

“Absolute faith corrupts as absolutely as absolute power.”

– Eric Hoffer  Reflections on the Human Condition

==================================

“The theory that you should always treat the religious convictions of other people with respect finds no support in the Gospels.”

– Arnold Lunn

=================================

“By one count there are some 700 scientists with respectable academic credentials (out of a total of 480,000 U.S. earth & life scientists) who give credence to creation-science, the general theory that complex life forms did not evolve but appeared ‘abruptly’.”

– Newsweek, June 29, 1987

=================================

“Today, the theory of evolution is an accepted fact for everyone but a fundamentalist minority, whose objections are based not on reasoning but on doctrinaire adherence to religious principles.”

– Dr. James D. Watson, winner of the Nobel prize for his co-discovery of the structure of DNA

==================================

“When I hear them praying extra loud, I always go out and check the lock on the smokehouse.”

– Harry Truman

==================================

“There is one notable thing about our Christianity: bad, bloody, merciless, money-grabbing and predatory as it is – in our country particularly, and in all other Christian countries in a somewhat modified degree – it is still a hundred times better than the Christianity of the Bible, with its prodigious crime – the invention of Hell. Measured by our Christianity of to-day, bad as it is, hypocritical as it is, empty and hollow as it is, neither the Deity nor His Son is a Christian, nor qualified for that moderately high place. Ours is a terrible religion. The fleets of the world could swim in spacious comfort in the innocent blood it has spilt.”

– Mark Twain  Reflections on Religion

==================================

“In religion and politics, people’s beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners, whose opinions about them were not worth a brass farthing.”

– Mark Twain

         ==================================

“George Washington though he belonged to the Episcopal church, never mentioned Christ in any of his writings and he was a deist.”

– Richard Shenkman  I love Paul Revere, whether He Rode or Not

==================================

“Think how great a proportion of Mankind consists of weak and ignorant Men and Women, and of inexperienc’d Youth of both Sexes, who have need of the Motives of Religion to restrain them from Vice, to support their Virtue, and retain them in the Practice of it till it becomes habitual, which is the great Point for its Security.”

– Benjamin Franklin

=================================

“A thorough reading and understanding of the Bible is the surest path to atheism.”

– Rev. Donald Morgan, theologian

==================================

“Atheism has one doctrine: To Question.

Atheism has one dogma: To Doubt.

The Atheist Bible has but one word and that word is, ‘THINK’.”

– Emmet F. Fields

==================================

“Religion easily has the greatest bullshit story ever told.

Think about it, religion has actually convinced people that there’s an INVISIBLE MAN…LIVING IN THE SKY … who watches every thing you do, every minute of every day.

And the invisible man has a list of ten special things that he does not want you to do.

And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry for ever and ever ’til the end of time … but he loves you.”

– George Carlin, Brain Droppings

==================================

“As an historian, I confess to a certain amusement when I hear the Judeo-Christian tradition praised as the source of our present-day concern for human rights. That is, for the valuable idea that all individuals everywhere are entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness on this earth.

In fact, the great religious ages were notable for their indifference to human rights in the contemporary sense.

They were notorious not only for acquiescence in poverty, inequality, exploitation, and oppression, but also for enthusiastic justification of slavery, persecution, abandonment of small children, torture, and genocide.

          – Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.

==================================

“Why have those countries with a strong Church-State alliance displayed such an eagerness to enforce religious dogmas and eliminate dissent through the power of the state?

Why has Christianity refused, whenever possible, to allow its beliefs to compete in a free marketplace of ideas?

The answer is obvious and revealing.

Christianity is peddling an inferior product, one that cannot withstand critical investigation.

Unable to compete favorably with other theories, it has sought to gain a monopoly through a state franchise, which means: through the use of force.”

– George H. Smith, from Atheism: The Case Against God

==================================

“The Bible tells us to be like God, and then on page after page it describes God as a mass murderer.

This may be the single most important key to the political behavior of Western Civilization.”

– Robert Anton Wilson, Right Where You Are Sitting Now

==================================

“So long as the universe had a beginning, we could suppose it had a creator. But if the universe is completely self-contained, having no boundary or edge, it would neither be created nor destroyed… it would simply be.

What place, then, for a creator?”

– Stephen Hawking

==================================

“No theory is too false, no fable too absurd, no superstition too degrading for acceptance when it has become embedded in common belief.

Men will submit themselves to torture and to death, mothers will immolate their children at the bidding of beliefs they thus accept.”

– Henry George

==================================

“Convicts register their religious affiliation when they’re processed into prison.

And about 99.5% of the huge U.S.A. prison population consists of inmates who identified themselves as members of religious denominations.”

– Gene M. Kasmar

==================================

“Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and tortuous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God.

It is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel.”

– Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

==================================

“The history of intellectual progress is written in the lives of infidels.”

– Robert Green  Ingersoll, The Great Infidels (Most probably America’s greatest orator.)

==================================

“According to the theologians, God prepared this globe expressly for the habitation of his loved children, and yet he filled the forests with ferocious beasts; placed serpents in every path; stuffed the world with earthquakes, and adorned its surface with mountains of flame.

Notwithstanding all this, we are told that the world is perfect; that it was created by a perfect being, and is therefore necessarily perfect.

The next moment, these same persons will tell us that the world was cursed; covered with brambles, thistles and thorns, and that man was doomed to disease and death, simply because our poor, dear mother ate an apple contrary to the command of an arbitrary God.”

– Robert Green Ingersoll, The Gods

==================================

“If you don’t think that logic is a good method for determining what to believe, make an attempt to convince me of that without using logic.”

          – Brett Lemoine

==================================

“The idea that a good God would send people to a burning Hell is utterly damnable to me. The ravings of insanity! Superstition gone to seed!

I don’t want to have anything to do with such a God. No avenging Jewish God, no satanic devil, no fiery hell is of any interest to me.”

– Luther Burbank, address to Science League of San Francisco, Dec. 1924

==================================

“Should one continue to base one’s life on a system of belief that–for all its occasional wisdom and frequent beauty–is demonstrably untrue?”

– Charles Templeton, former right-hand man to Billy Graham, in Farewell to God

==================================

“I’m firmly convinced Michael Carneal is a Christian. He’s a sinner, yes, but not an atheist.”

– Rev. Paul Donner, of the St. Paul Lutheran Church, Paducah, Ky., describing accused mass murderer Michael Carneal, 14, in contrast to early reports.

==================================

“The Christian view that all intercourse outside marriage is immoral was, as we see in the above passages from St. Paul, based upon the view that all sexual intercourse, even within marriage, is regrettable.

A view of this sort, which goes against biological facts, can only be regarded by sane people as a morbid aberration.

The fact that it is embedded in Christian ethics has made Christianity throughout its whole history a force tending towards mental disorders and unwholesome views of life.”

– Bertrand Russell

==================================

“Scientific research is based on the idea that everything that takes place is determined by laws of nature, and therefore this holds for the action of people.

For this reason, a research scientist will hardly be inclined to believe that events could be influenced by a prayer, i.e. by a wish addressed to a Supernatural Being.”

– Albert Einstein, responding to a child who wrote and asked if scientists pray.

==================================

“If the liberties of the American people are ever destroyed, they will fall by the hands of the clergy.”

– Marquis de Lafayette

==================================

“Here and there in the midst of American society you meet with men full of a fanatical and almost wild spiritualism, which hardly exists in Europe.

From time to time strange sects arise which endeavor to strike out extraordinary paths to eternal happiness.

Religious insanity is very common in the United States.”

– Alexis de Tocqueville

==================================

“I fight fire with fire. You shouldn’t treat a crazy religious cult with kid gloves.”

– Ian Plimer, Melbourne University  Professor of  Geology, in reference to legal action challenging the existence of Noah’s Ark

==================================

“The truth is that Christian theology, like every other theology, is not only opposed to the scientific spirit; it is also opposed to all other attempts at rational thinking.

Not by accident does Genesis 3 make the father of knowledge a serpent — slimy, sneaking and abominable.

Since the earliest days the church as an organization has thrown itself violently against every effort to liberate the body and mind of man.

It has been, at all times and everywhere, the habitual and incorrigible defender of bad governments, bad laws, bad social theories, bad institutions.

It was, for centuries, an apologist for slavery, as it was the apologist for the divine right of kings.”

– Henry Louis “H.L.” Mencken

==================================

“Heretics have been hated from the beginning of recorded time; they have been ostracized, exiled, tortured, maimed and butchered; but it has generally proved impossible to smother them; and when it has not, the society that has succeeded has always declined.”

          – Judge Learned Hand

==================================

“Gods are creatures of the human imagination.

Faith in imaginary beings does not prove their existence.

Passionate devotion to a faith does not prove it to be true.”

– Jillian Becker

==================================

“All laws and moral rules are man-made.”

– Jillian Becker

==================================

“Many a belief can survive persecution but not critical examination.”

– Jillian Becker

==================================

“The barbaric religions of primitive worlds hold not a germ of scientific fact, though they claim to explain all.

Yet if one of these savages has all the logical ground for his beliefs taken away, he doesn’t stop believing.

He then calls his mistaken beliefs ‘faith’ because he knows they are right.

And he knows they are right because he has faith.”

– Harry Harrison, said by a character in his novel Deathworld

==================================

“I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator.”

 – Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf

Posted under Atheism, Christianity, Judaism, Religion general by Jillian Becker on Sunday, October 9, 2022

Tagged with

This post has 8 comments.

Permalink
Older Posts »