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

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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

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

– Karl Popper

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“Absolute faith corrupts as absolutely as absolute power.”

– Eric Hoffer  Reflections on the Human Condition

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

– Arnold Lunn

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“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

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“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

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

– Harry Truman

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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

– Rev. Donald Morgan, theologian

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“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

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“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

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“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.

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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

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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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.

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“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

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“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.

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

– Marquis de Lafayette

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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“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

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

– Jillian Becker

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

– Jillian Becker

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“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

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“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

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