Blog Archive


Tuesday, June 30, 2009
A couple articles this week indicated the growing chasm between those who want an honest and open discussion of the science behind the global warming hysteria and those who want suppress the dissenters and even treat them as traitors (as well as showing how disconnected the American media is from the truth). The first, by Christopher Booker in The Daily Telegraph (the leading British newspaper), highlights the recent attacks on one of the world's leading polar bear experts merely because he won't toe the line on climate change.
[O]ne of the world's leading experts on polar bears has been told to stay away from this week's meeting, specifically because his views on global warming do not accord with those of the rest of the group.

Dr Mitchell Taylor has been researching the status and management of polar bears in Canada and around the Arctic Circle for 30 years, as both an academic and a government employee. More than once since 2006 he has made headlines by insisting that polar bear numbers, far from decreasing, are much higher than they were 30 years ago. Of the 19 different bear populations, almost all are increasing or at optimum levels, only two have for local reasons modestly declined.
Dr Taylor had obtained funding to attend this week's meeting of the PBSG, but this was voted down by its members because of his views on global warming. The chairman, Dr Andy Derocher, a former university pupil of Dr Taylor's, frankly explained in an email (which I was not sent by Dr Taylor) that his rejection had nothing to do with his undoubted expertise on polar bears: "it was the position you've taken on global warming that brought opposition".

Dr Taylor was told that his views running "counter to human-induced climate change are extremely unhelpful". His signing of the Manhattan Declaration – a statement by 500 scientists that the causes of climate change are not CO2 but natural, such as changes in the radiation of the sun and ocean currents – was "inconsistent with the position taken by the PBSG".

So, as the great Copenhagen bandwagon rolls on, stand by this week for reports along the lines of "scientists say polar bears are threatened with extinction by vanishing Arctic ice". But also check out Anthony Watt's Watts Up With That website for the latest news of what is actually happening in the Arctic. The average temperature at midsummer is still below zero, the latest date that this has happened in 50 years of record-keeping. After last year's recovery from its September 2007 low, this year's ice melt is likely to be substantially less than for some time. The bears are doing fine.
That scientists are telling other scientists to stay away just because their findings aren't politically correct shows just how far science has fallen in recent years. Sad, isn't it?

The second article comes to us from this side of the pond, written by the feeble-minded Paul Krugman at the New York Times.
So the House passed the Waxman-Markey climate-change bill. In political terms, it was a remarkable achievement.

But 212 representatives voted no. A handful of these no votes came from representatives who considered the bill too weak, but most rejected the bill because they rejected the whole notion that we have to do something about greenhouse gases.

And as I watched the deniers make their arguments, I couldn’t help thinking that I was watching a form of treason — treason against the planet.

To fully appreciate the irresponsibility and immorality of climate-change denial, you need to know about the grim turn taken by the latest climate research.

The fact is that the planet is changing faster than even pessimists expected: ice caps are shrinking, arid zones spreading, at a terrifying rate. And according to a number of recent studies, catastrophe — a rise in temperature so large as to be almost unthinkable — can no longer be considered a mere possibility. It is, instead, the most likely outcome if we continue along our present course.
In other words, we’re facing a clear and present danger to our way of life, perhaps even to civilization itself. How can anyone justify failing to act?

Well, sometimes even the most authoritative analyses get things wrong. And if dissenting opinion-makers and politicians based their dissent on hard work and hard thinking — if they had carefully studied the issue, consulted with experts and concluded that the overwhelming scientific consensus was misguided — they could at least claim to be acting responsibly.

But if you watched the debate on Friday, you didn’t see people who’ve thought hard about a crucial issue, and are trying to do the right thing. What you saw, instead, were people who show no sign of being interested in the truth. They don’t like the political and policy implications of climate change, so they’ve decided not to believe in it — and they’ll grab any argument, no matter how disreputable, that feeds their denial.
Given this contempt for hard science, I’m almost reluctant to mention the deniers’ dishonesty on matters economic. But in addition to rejecting climate science, the opponents of the climate bill made a point of misrepresenting the results of studies of the bill’s economic impact, which all suggest that the cost will be relatively low.

Still, is it fair to call climate denial a form of treason? Isn’t it politics as usual?

Yes, it is — and that’s why it’s unforgivable.
Yet the deniers are choosing, willfully, to ignore that threat, placing future generations of Americans in grave danger, simply because it’s in their political interest to pretend that there’s nothing to worry about. If that’s not betrayal, I don’t know what is.
It seems Krugman, like most of his leftist brethren, can no longer contain his inner tyrant.
Monday, June 29, 2009
I have a feeling that the media won't cover this as closely as it did the similar accusations of Bush...

(HT: Steve M.)
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Doug Wilson has an excellent post on Christians who think it right to take in Jesus' name rather than to give. He doesn't pull punches.
Every Christian heart does go out to those who are uncared for, to those who are uninsurable. We are supposed to clothe the naked, feed the hungry, and treat the sick. Of course we are. So take up an offering already. Support your church's missionaries. Give to the inner city work that your denomination sponsors. Jesus said to give in His name. He never told us to go out there and take in His name.

The Church is called to be an organization of worshippers, worship that results in a glorious overflow of givers. The statists, leftists, do-gooders, and sob-sisters are an organization of confused takers. They talk as though they are giving, but the whole thing is a sham. They give only what they have previously seized by force. And to crown this glorious hypocrisy, they preen themselves on their ethical conscience and moral superiority. But there are few spectacles worse than thugs with guns acting all Sermon-on-the-Mounty.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Normally I don't care to mention or comment on the seemingly daily stream of personal sins emanating from public offices around the country, but a little item caught my attention in the recent news that the Republican governor of South Carolina, Mark Sanford, has been committing adultery for some time. This is the statement that his wife, Jenny, made at the news conference. I'll highlight the following:

I believe enduring love is primarily a commitment and an act of will [emphasis mine], and for a marriage to be successful, that commitment must be reciprocal. I believe Mark has earned a chance to resurrect our marriage.

Psalm 127 states that sons are a gift from the Lord and children a reward from Him. I will continue to pour my energy into raising our sons to be honorable young men. I remain willing to forgive Mark completely for his indiscretions and to welcome him back, in time, if he continues to work toward reconciliation with a true spirit of humility and repentance.

This is a very painful time for us and I would humbly request now that members of the media respect the privacy of my boys and me as we struggle together to continue on with our lives and as I seek the wisdom of Solomon, the strength and patience of Job and the grace of God in helping to heal my family.
A few thoughts...

  • It is to Governor Sanford's overwhelming shame that the spiritual leadership and discernment within their family is only shown by his wife.
  • He is one blessed man to have such a wife, especially one scorned in such a wretched manner as adultery.
  • Christians should pray that God will get the glory in this situation as the world looks on, waiting for another prominent Christian marriage to fail. May the Sanfords end their trip of reconciliation at the Cross and not on the couch of some worldly therapist.
  • Lastly, there but for the grace of God go we all.

[UPDATE: Doug Wilson has something good to say on this issue.]

The proposed health care bill is likely to cost around $1 trillion. The usual number of uninsured thrown around is about 45 million (nevermind that most of those actually have access to insurance and the REAL number of uninsured is closer to 15 million). So, if we divide the former by the latter, we find that the new bill will cost about $22,000 per uninsured person. Considering that the average annual individual insurance premium is about $5,000 (it's actually lower when you factor in family plans), why don't we just buy health insurance for those 45 million and save us umm... about $765 million?

Just one more lesson in the inefficiency of government...
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
If you want a glimpse at what today's college student is undergoing at universities across the country, check out It's usually pretty sickening. This is just the latest:
I was having a casual conversation with a very high-ranking UC administrator about a proposal that he was developing to increase "diversity" at UC in a manner that would comply with the dictates of California's Constitution and the prohibition against race, gender and ethnic preferences.

As I listened to his proposal, I asked him why he considered it important to tinker with admissions instead of just letting the chips fall where they may. In an unguarded moment, he told me that unless the university took steps to "guide" admissions decisions, UC would be dominated by Asians. When I asked, "What would be wrong with that?" I got an answer that speaks volumes about the underlying philosophy at many universities with regard to Asian enrollment.

The UC administrator told me that Asians are "too dull - they study, study, study."
It is a mistake to believe that all forms of discrimination flow from hate and inherently foul motives. Certainly, the desire to attract more black students to a campus that is lacking in blacks is not an evil aspiration; however, when it becomes necessary to reject those who "study, study, study" in order to admit those who study insufficiently, then the mission to include more blacks becomes a much more ominous one.

Since the passage of Proposition 209 in 1996, Asian enrollment at UC has skyrocketed... The overall percentage in the nine undergraduate UC campuses is over 40%, in a state where the Asian population is about 13%. Thus, Asians are excelling under policies that emphasize and reward academic achievement at a ratio that is over three times their actual statewide population. If you are a proponent of "diversity" and representation (essentially a de facto quota system), this outcome is your worst nightmare.
In recent months, the UC Regents have deliberated about - and approved - a proposal that would significantly revise the admissions policies of the university. Beginning in 2012, UC will no longer automatically admit the top 12.5% of all students based on statewide performance, and will no longer rely so heavily on grades and test scores. Instead, the eligibility pool will be expanded by a projected 40% by eliminating the requirement for applicants to take the SAT subject matter tests. The net effect of these changes is that academic achievement will be less significant and UC admissions administrators will have the "flexibility" to discriminate against those "dull" Asians who "study, study, study" all the time without violating Proposition 209.
There is one truth that is universally applicable in the era of "diversity," especially in American universities: an absolute unwillingness to accept the verdict of colorblind policies. Until that fact changes, UC and other American institutions will continue trying to fix that which is not broken, to achieve their arrogant version of "diversity," by discriminating against those "dull" Asians, such as two of my grandchildren whose mother is half-Vietnamese.
[HT: Steve M.]
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Doug Wilson has an excellent piece today on the health care debate, brilliantly cutting to the heart of the underlying issue.
People put up with this nonsense because they have already become slaves in principle. They have become external slaves because they had previously drifted into internal slavery. A people with their hearts set free by Christ (as only Christ can liberate) will not ever have their wrists shackled. A nation that inherited freedom from such shackles from a previous and more faithful generation will find themselves dragged back into slavery, and they will be dragged there by their manifold sins.

Those sins include, but are not limited to, insolence, pride, lust, greed, sloth, envy, watching dirty movies, materialism, dressing like a skank, militarism, and voting for what is called health care reform these days.
Here is an excellent explanation at the false myths and lies behind the push by Obama and other liberals to socialize health care in this country (which, thankfully, appears to be dying in Congress).
Monday, June 22, 2009
My wife and I watched a fantastic movie this past weekend called "Taking Chance." The film, originally made for HBO but also released on DVD, depicts the true story of the escort home of the body of PFC Chance Phelps, a Marine killed in Iraq in 2004. It is very moving to see the care and respect and honor attended to the corpse throughout the trip home, both by his escort, LtCol Mike Strobl (played by Kevin Bacon), and by random airport baggage handlers and flight attendants along the way. Part of the greatness of this film is that it truly wants to honor the military dead rather than make a political or ideological point. Not once do we hear a politics-laden statement, nor does the movie indicate any position on the Iraq war. Instead, the focus, as it should be, is entirely on Phelps, his escort, and the thankfulness of a nation. Check it out!
Thursday, June 18, 2009
"We're the first society in which a symptom of poverty is obesity." - Mark Steyn
Since I'm on an economic kick these days, here is a brief discussion on the need to abolish the minimum wage and how that would significantly help the economy and soaring unemployment. Also, the author has links to a couple longer pieces at the end of the post which go into more detail on the issue.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Doug Wilson has a wonderful post today on rights and the government's involvement therein.
There is a chasm that separates the two views of rights. In the first, grounded in a biblical worldview, rights basically consist of the right to be left alone. The only subsidy that others must pay in support of this right is to do the leaving alone. I have the right to own property, which means that others have the obligation not to steal it from me. I have the right to keep and bear arms, which means that others don't get to take my gun (as they pry it from my cold, dead fingers). I have the right to free speech, which means that others have to obligation to let me say what I believe. I have the right to a fair trial if accused of a crime, which means that others must not bring charges against me that they cannot prove in an open court. The subsidy that others (especially others in the government) pay to me in support of my rights is that of abiding by the law when it comes to me. They can honor all my rights without ever finding out that I exist. To the extent they come into contact with me, they have the obligation to obey the Golden Rule. That's it. There is no expensive enforcement mechanism, no vast budgets, no regulatory agencies, nothing. Two guys sitting on a log all afternoon can honor all the rights given by God to the other one.

But let us look at the other kind of "right," so honored and prized by officious meddlers, tyrants, and regulatory punks. If I have a right to affordable health care, then that means someone else has an obligation. (All rights bring obligations for others with them. The two concepts of rights differ in the nature of the obligations they impose.) So if I have a right to affordable health care that I cannot afford, then this means that someone else has the obligation to make up the difference. If I have a right to own a house, but I cannot afford a house, then someone else, or a consortium of someone else's, has the obligation to buy me one. Capice?

When hunting around for who that somebody who owes me a house might be, I look (not being mama's little fool) for somebody with money. Whoever has some extra money owes me a house, darn it. And knee surgery. And a better job than the one at the warehouse I used to have.
But what happens if the first view is correct, and my rights consist largely of my life and property being left unhassled by others, but the government is proceeding on the assumption that my rights actually consist of me getting my share of the free chocolate milk, as I have said before, that is owed to everyone? On the strength of that assumption, they will go in search of the funding for these rights, and they will take the funds that are necessary for me to get my milk, my house, and my surgery. But in doing this, they are stealing -- violating basic human rights, and they are doing it in the name of basic human rights.

God's Word says something about not stealing, even if you are the government. Ahab would not have had the right to take Naboth's vineyard if only he had been planning to fund Medicare with it. And God's Word does not say that I have the right to a free house, with someone else obligated to pay for it. This means that all the current talk about rights is a deceitful lie, calculated to create confusion so that the government can create a situation they desire about as much as anything -- free rein to trample on real human rights. And we must never forget that in this regard property rights are human rights.
Democrats AND many Republicans could stand to learn this lesson.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Wow. ABC is now openly shilling for Obama's policies, as opposed to the slightly more subtle reporting they've done for the last couple years.
The WaPo had an unintentionally depressing article last week on how today's school children are getting behind causes. Oh, for the days when kids learned about good character as the priority over cultural fads. We're circling the drain...
"Polystyrene trays are bad for the environment and they have a big carbon footprint and they're made out of oil, which is bad for the environment, because it makes global warming," said Margot Bloch, 8, a third-grader at the school. Her mother, a peace activist, is among the club's sponsors.
On a side note, I've been told that The Goode Family is especially adept at ripping into politically correct families. I'm going to check it out.
Monday, June 15, 2009
From Money, Greed, and God:
The Zero-Sum Game Myth is believing that trade requires a winner and a loser.

Everything I Needed to Know About the Market I Learned in Kindergarten

It was sixth grade. We played the "trading game"... The teacher passed out little gifts to all of the students... [she] probably picked them all up in the dollar aisle at the local Kmart.

After giving every kid one gift, our teacher split the class into five groups of five students each. She then asked us to write down, on a scale of one to ten, how much we liked our gift. That was it. We didn't talk to anyone else. We just decided how much we liked our toy. Our teacher then compiled all the scores and added up the total.

Then she said we could trade with the other kids in our group. No one had to trade... Of course, a few students kept or got stuck with their original gift, but many ended up with a toy they liked more. Again, we graded our toys and the teacher added up the scores. The total score went up.

Then she told us that we could trade with everyone in the room. Now we all had twenty-four possible trading partners rather than just four...

After everyone had a chance to trade, we again graded our toys and added up the scores. The total number had gone way up. Almost everyone ended up with a toy he liked more than the one he started with. No one had a score that had gone down. The only kids whose scores didn't go up were the ones who happened to get gifts they really liked at the beginning...

I didn't get the point of the game until I played it again twenty-five years later. As it happens, the game teaches some of the most important lessons of economics.

Lesson One: Trading freely can add value even though the traded items remains physically unchanged.
Lesson Two: Normally when trading freely, the more trading partners there are, the better.
Lesson Three: A free exchange is a win-win game.
Think about it. The trading partners wouildn't trade if each did not perceive himself as better off as a result. [This is what John Stossel calls the "double thank you."]
Lesson Four: The game is win-win because of the rules set beforehand.

The players aren't allowed to coerce or steal from each other. A free market is not a free-for-all in which everybody can do what they want... Ideally, the players would be virtuous enough to play by the rules. But in the trading game, as in real life, you can't count on the virtue of others... So you need an outside enforcer. In the game... the teacher played this role. In real life, it includes parents, teachers, churches... and the government.

Lesson Five: Scarcity is almost always real.
The peaceable kingdom of God with limitless plenty isn't one of the options. The basic options are a win-lose society based on the laws of the jungle, a lose-lose society of coercive socialism..., or a market where win-wins are possible...

Lesson Six: Opportunity costs.

[N]o one gets to have more than one toy. In the real world, if I only have ten grand, I can't buy both a ten-thousand-dollar Chevy Impala and a ten-thousand-dollar first-issue Tales from the Crypt comic book... Trading can make me better off than I was before, but it can't give me everything.

Lesson Seven: Economic value is in the eye of the beholder.
I have to say, we need more of those teachers today as mentioned above. She was brilliant. Unfortunately, you're probably more likely to find a teacher who derides capitalism than actually understands it.
This is sickening...
Friday, June 12, 2009
[DISCLAIMER: I have never tried a tobacco product and never will, nor am I on the payroll of "Big Tobacco."]

Today, the Senate approved a bill giving the federal government the authority to regulate tobacco (Obama has promised to sign it). It is fascist stuff like this that make me not too hopeful for this country's future. Rather than allow people to think for themselves and inhale or imbibe whatever they like (as long it doesn't affect others), the all-wise senators have seen fit to become the all-powerful daddy of Americans, telling us what we can and cannot do.

What's equally as bad is how dishonest this bill is. Jacob Sullum explains:
Tucked away in the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, which was passed by the House in April and by the Senate this week, is a provision that speaks volumes about the law's impact. It prohibits manufacturers from making "any statement directed to consumers" that "would reasonably be expected to result in consumers believing" a tobacco product "is regulated, inspected or approved by the Food and Drug Administration."

The bill, which President Obama supports, authorizes the FDA to regulate tobacco products. Yet it says, "consumers are likely to be confused and misled" if they know the FDA is regulating tobacco products. They might mistakenly believe that FDA regulation makes these products safer, for example, when the opposite is the truth.
[T]he FDA can keep a product off the market even if it is indisputably safer than conventional cigarettes, based on fears that it will attract nonsmokers or smokers who otherwise would have given up tobacco entirely. That same hurdle applies to the promotion of existing products.
Such censorship would sacrifice the lives of current smokers for the sake of a tobacco-free future. Likewise the mandated reductions in nicotine content authorized by the law, which would be aimed at making cigarettes less attractive to nonsmokers.

The predictable result of reducing nicotine content is that people will smoke more to get the dose to which they are accustomed. They will take more puffs, inhale more deeply, hold the smoke longer or consume more cigarettes. Consequently, they will be exposed to higher levels of toxins and carcinogens.
Since FDA regulation is apt to make cigarettes more hazardous while impeding competition from safer alternatives, you can begin to see why mentioning it might give consumers the wrong impression. I won't tell them if you don't.
[Oops, I forgot. The above disclaimer isn't completely true... I did try a snort of German snuff one time.]
[UPDATE] Ron Paul nails it on this issue.
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
A wonderful outcome to the depraved action of a mentally ill man: Tiller's partial-birth abortion clinic is closing permanently!
From Money, Greed, and God:
The Piety Myth is focusing on our good intentions rather than on the unintended consequences of our actions.

"Piety," said the Christian philosopher Etienne Gilson, "is no substitute for technique." What he meant is that having the right intentions, being oriented in the right way, doesn't take the place of doing things right. A pilot's caring deeply for his passengers and wanting to land a plane safely are no substitute for his learn how to actually land planes safely. Jesus suggest the same thing. "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." Don't forget the third item: love the Lord with all your mind. And don't misunderstand heart. Your heart isn't just your feelings. In the Bible, heart refers to the seat of your will and your emotions. I hope you already have a heart for the poor. Lots of Christians do. But do you have a mind for the poor? Unfortunately, that's in rather short supply.

God knows your heart. Spiritually you're better off a little mixed up about economics than indifferent to human suffering. Economically, though, only what you do is important, whatever your reason. Buying a bunch of bananas at Costco will have the same economic effect no matter why you buy them.
In fact, it's morally self-indulgent to feel good about our motives when it comes to actions that affect the world... when it's time to roll up our sleeves and actually try to help someone, fixating on our motives can become a stumbling block. It can distract us from discovering the right action at the right time.
Henry Hazlitt, an economic journalist, thought this was so important that he defined economics in terms of consequences. "The art of economics," he said, "consists in looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups."

This is one of those principles that are easy to get and even easier to forget. Unfortunately, Christians have supported all sorts of policies that were well motivated but that made matters worse, not better. Let's look at a few popular policies that are long on compassion but short on prudence.

A "Living Wage"
Fair Trade
Foreign Aid
Government-Run Welfare

(p. 35-49)
The Piety Myth concept is so important in all areas of life, not just economics. While liberals tend to be the worst violators of the idea that as long as you do something, it doesn't matter what you do, everyone (especially Christians) should remember to guard against it daily. Spend your time, money, and effort on useful things. Be discerning!


UPDATE: In related news, a challenge to Republicans.
[Republicans] have decided, as a matter of firm principle, to have no solid center. Because the breeze is blowing slightly to the right, they have tied the helium balloon of their core principles to whatever the Democrats are currently saying, and waft gently (to the right) as they dream of the next election.
Monday, June 08, 2009
Doug Wilson has an excellent piece today on the motives behind the new Marxist push in America to take from the rich and give to the "poor."
The word envy enters a lot of political and economic discussion, but it is usually referred to the envy of those who stand to gain materially after the smoke of redistribution all clears away. When someone runs on a platform of free choocolate milk for everybody, envy is driving the whole thing, and it is barely disguised. When those without money outnumber those who have it, and the question of equitable distribution comes up for a vote, how does that vote usually go? As the wise man said, it is two coyotes and a sheep voting on what to have for lunch. Like I said, that is how political envy is usually thought of, and it ought to be thought of a lot more. That is a big part of our problem.

But envy also operates at another level, a much higher level. This is what we find on display in the behavior of the pampered and privileged who wrap themselves in the dogmas of the hard left. Why would they do that? Envy doesn't explain it, at least not the kind of envy outlined above. These people already have all the chocolate milk they could want. Correct that -- they actually have all the carob-flavored coconut water that they want, which is another subject, albeit related.
[M]en envy more than material goods. They also envy power, and the ability to dispose of others with the flourish of a pen. And when the envious are driving a nation down, each new economic crisis is used as an excuse to fix what they believe to be the real problem, which is lack of personal political control. The crisis is used, not to address the economic woes, which are simply the presenting problem, but rather to address what they believe to be the real crisis -- the fact that they cannot control everything. Yet.
Saturday, June 06, 2009
From Money, Greed, and God:
The Nirvana Myth is not simply the belief that good will triumph in the end or the belief that the kingdom of God is already present in history. It's the delusion that we can build utopia if we try hard enough, and that every real society is intolerably wicked because it doesn't measure up to utopia.

We learned in the twentieth century that acting on this myth can be disastrous. Never has there been a greater gap between ideals and outcomes than in communism. In fact, so many people would not have been led astray if communism had advertised baser goals. No, communist brutalities needed the cover of some grand moral vision. Communism appealed to, even if it inverted, man's moral impulse. This is the worst outcome of the Nirvana Myth.

But the myth can have subtle effects even if we reject utopian schemes. To avoid its dangers, we have to resist the temptation to compare our live options with an ideal that we can never realize... It doesn't do anyone any good to tear down a society that is "unjust" compared with the kingdom of God if that society is more just than any of the ones that will replace it.

Compared with Nirvana, no real society looks good. Compared with utopia, Stalinist Russia and America at its best will both get bad reviews. The differences between them may seem trivial compared to utopia. That's one of the grave dangers of utopian thinking: it blinds us to the important differences among the various ways of ordering society... The free exchange of wages for work in the market place starts to look like slavery. Tough competition for market share between companies is confused with theft and survival of the fittest. Banking is confused with usury and exploitation. This shouldn't surprise us. Of course a modern capitalist society like the United States looks terrible compared with the kingdom of God. But that's bad moral reasoning. The question isn't whether capitalism measures up to the kingdom of God. The question is whether there's a better alternative in this life. (p. 31-32)
Thursday, June 04, 2009

HT: My wonderful wife.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009
So Obama wouldn't promote the National Day of Prayer, but he will make June the national "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month?" It's particularly interesting how President Barry repeatedly mentions the "HIV/AIDS epidemic" in this country. I thought that lie was put to bed long ago. It's not widespread (not talking globally), nor is it an epidemic like the typical disease where one has little-to-no ability to protect oneself. With AIDS, if you're a heterosexual and monogamous American, you're extremely unlikely to get it. If you're a pervert who enjoys intimate time with your own gender and filling yourself with mind-numbing drugs, you're highly likely to contract it.

Doug Wilson has some humorous reasons to be grateful for this proclamation:
10. That, despite the glowing rhetoric, nobody appears to have noticed that equal rights for bisexuals means that such marriages (when we get there) would have to have a minium of three copulating units. So the good news is that President Obama is still guilty of hate-criming the bisexuals. And imagine my astonishment that he is doing this legally. And nobody pushing this seems to be aware of how filled with hate they all still are.

9. That this happened at a time when we have an example to follow as we craft our responses. All we have to say is that we think a wise heterosexual, having lived that life, should be able to make better judgments than someone who hasn't had the richness of that experience. That's all.
6. That they are unwittingly paving the way for the legalization of polygamy, which will prove to be the basis for the rebuilding of the Republican Party. Then watch out.

5. That the president issued this proclamation while at the same time holding to the same position on gay marriage as recently articulated by the winsome Miss California, thus showing in yet another way that he is filled to the brim with thought crimes and all manner of evil.
3. That they had the foresight to press these issues in the midst of an economic downturn. Sexual energies are powerful when harnessed, and suppose, say, the nation's shoe manufacturers are languishing. All you have to do is proclaim National Footwear Fetish Week, and bam! there you are, back in the game.

2. That the president is clearly hearing Dick Cheney's footsteps everywhere. On foreign policy certainly, but now that the former VP has declared himself a tolerance-monger on gay marriage, Obama is getting chased down the road by him on this issue as well. You can cluck at both of them with moral disapproval all you want, but the entertainment value is still high.

1. That they are working us into this slowly. September as it turns out is Screw the Pooch Month, but the American people won't be ready for that for, oh, weeks yet.
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
"This global-warming frenzy has all the marks of a classic sociological phenomenon known as groupthink. As a rule, when partisans appeal to "consensus" in a scientific dispute, chances are that: (a) there's not a consensus; (b) the partisans are trying to silence dissent and marginalize dissenters; and (c) the evidence for their view isn't that great. No scientist worth her salt would appeal to consensus in making a case for, say, the theory of continental drift." (Jay Richards, Money, Greed, and God, p. 195)
Monday, June 01, 2009
As mentioned before, abortionist Dr. Tiller was killed this weekend in his church. I also happened to watch the film "Valkyrie" this weekend, which got me thinking about the parallels between assassinating Hitler and killing Tiller. Assuming one isn't an absolute pacifist, for Christians, what makes the former morally acceptable but the latter decried as evil? Or are they both wrong or both good? After all, if you saw a small child about to be killed by a man, wouldn't it be a very moral thing to kill him (or at least violently resist him)?

Greg Koukl has an excellent discussion of this very question here. Basically, he argues that killing Hitler would have likely saved many thousands of lives, whereas killing a lone abortionist may save very few (and hurt the overall objective of saving the lives of the unborn).
Imagine for just a minute commandos in the Second World War impersonating Nazi officers, dropped behind Nazi lines to infiltrate concentration camps. Their mission? Destroy the gas chambers. Now mingling incognito with the rest of the camp cadre, they have many opportunities to kill other soldiers, even officers. Even the Commandant. But do you kill the individual executioner or do you go after the gas chamber? In this case, it seems that killing the individual would be wrong even though he was truly murderous, because it would keep the commandos from fulfilling their larger mission. And their failure would mean more lives lost in the long run. The short term gain would be no victory because the machinery of destruction would still be in place. Do you see that?

What this illustration shows is that there is no necessary contradiction in the view that abortion is a holocaust, yet the killing of individual abortionists is properly condemned. In fact, it is precisely because we hold to the innocent humanity of the unborn that we insist on an approach to this solution that is directed at the machinery of the killing--the laws, the economics and the deep human need that makes the alternative appealing. That's our focus.
[UPDATE: Doug Wilson has posted some good thoughts on this matter:
Sure, we condemn the murder of Tiller now, like good citizens, but we will only do so unless and until the targeted murder of such individuals is determined by the Supreme Court to be a consitutional right we didn't know we had. Turns out they found it in a recently discovered penumbra somewhere. Once they say it is okay, we will all immediately shut up about it, right?

Well, no, because the Supreme Court doesn't have the authority to declare murder okay, and only ghastly human beings like Tiller think they do. When such men take the Supremes up on their invitation to any slaughter that has been given the legal okay, they are helping to create a society in which lawlessness reigns. They cooperate with those who frame mischief with a law. But once this lawlessness has taken root, the bright boys running everything start to discover that lawlessness has certain shortcomings as a social theory.

One last comment. The fact that Tiller was a member of Reformation Lutheran pretty much sums up everything that is wrong with our nation. But even this highlights another interesting feature. If the suspect Roeder in fact is the guilty party, and is a member of a conservative church somewhere, the chances are pretty good that he will be excommunicated (as Paul Hill was) for his bloody ways. The chances that someone like Tiller would be excommunicated from a liberal church for his bloodlust are chances approaching zero.

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Darius' book montage

The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Gospel The Main Thing
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God
Overcoming Sin and Temptation
According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible
Disciplines of a Godly Man
Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
When Helping Hurts: Alleviating Poverty Without Hurting the Poor. . .and Ourselves
The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith
Respectable Sins
The Kite Runner
Life Laid Bare: The Survivors in Rwanda Speak
Machete Season: The Killers in Rwanda Speak
A Generous Orthodoxy: Why I am a missional, evangelical, post/protestant, liberal/conservative, mystical/poetic, biblical, charismatic/contemplative, fundamentalist/calvinist, ... anabaptist/anglican, metho
Show Them No Mercy
The Lord of the Rings
Life at the Bottom: The Worldview That Makes the Underclass
The Truth War: Fighting for Certainty in an Age of Deception
Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming
The Chronicles of Narnia
Les Misérables

Darius Teichroew's favorite books »