What the Pope Sees (and Doesn't) in America


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MSK:

~ You THEN ask me...

Do you think that getting moderate Muslims (or any who will listen) to consider and adopt individual rights and separation of church and state a bad thing or a waste of time?

~ Not at all...in the l-o-n-g term of things. I think the idea's great, but irrelevent to obviously immediate necessities for us. My immediate concern is the short term lethalities the moderates are irrelevent to. (If they're not, I await being shown otherwise.)

~ Your concern seems to stress getting the Moderates to 'moderate' their views more than they already are; I've no prob with that. Catholics have come a long way since Inquisition times.

~ *My* primary concern is with the Fundamentalists, the ones involved in The Twin Towers (and whatever other plots they're working on.) My secondary concern is where we apparently part ways re viewing the Moderates: how the Moderates have so little to show (6-yrs now?) re public arguing against the Fundies.

LLAP

J:D

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.

As a Christian, though, here's where I stand on the subject of the kind of agape love you are describing.

If I turn the other cheek once, shame on you.

If I turn the other cheek twice, shame on me.

The West has turned the other cheek to the Moslem jihadists *thousands* of times. Time to slap back, I say!

Bad approach. If thine enemy smite thee on thy cheek (in other words, it is not an accident) then tear his head off and shit down his neck. After which burn his property and slaughter his family to the second order of consanguinity. If this is done consistently, people will stop smiting thee on thy cheek. An accident, I might forgive. An attack on Me and Mine, never.

The Columbian Drug Lords have the right approach. Never get mad. Get even. In the past, the Romans had a similar approach. Whenever some party gave them grief, they sent in the Legions. Rome lasted longer than we have (so far) and would have lasted even longer if they knew about the dreadful effects of lead. If we, as a people, were lean, mean and nasty, the world would not trifle with us. Mike Savage, a radio talk show host of the program -Savage Nation-, has suggested sending in the Soccer Thugs and having the cops turn a blind eye. This probably would not work to well in practice, but it does have an emotional appeal. If we wish to survive as a people, a nation and a culture, we had best get in touch with our Inner Fascist a.s.a.p.

And for you O'ists Out There, recall that Ayn Rand has taught that in an emergency, all bets are off, so don't be squeamish.

The Rule is simple.

a. Protect and cherish your friends.

b. Be polite to neutrals who have not harmed you and might even benefit you.

c. Destroy your enemies. Wipe them from the face of the earth.

Do this consistently and you will have no enemies after a while. Then you can be a Nice Guy for a bit.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Edited by BaalChatzaf
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~ You ask a few questions for me to respond to. Herewith...
By ignoring the moderate Muslims and keeping intellectual focus on the radical part, I have two questions:

1. Who do you want to communicate with?

. . .

1. The problem-makers...in their chosen/decided ways of 'communicating' with me, 'personally', or with my ilk (aka, 'heretics', like T-T occupants, Salman Rushdie, etc.)

John,

Have you considered going on the Internet boards where Islamic fundamentalists communicate with each other, or at least preach? I can provide you with links if you like. Have you ever been inside a mosque (especially one funded by Saudi Arabian Salafism or Wahhabism)? I ask because these two places appear to be the most obvious ones where you can communicate with the problem makers. I seriously doubt you will find them on Objectivist internet boards.

My secondary concern is where we apparently part ways re viewing the Moderates: how the Moderates have so little to show (6-yrs now?) re public arguing against the Fundies.

I have provided links several times to groups, events, etc., and will probably keep repeating them and adding to them. Not many readers inform themselves through these links, though, apparently because they are not as sexy as the macho talk against Muslims I see all the time on Objectivist forums. But moderate Muslims who publicly denounce Islamist terrorism do exist, and many are in mainstream vehicles.

I have a counter question. Where were all the demonstrations against Christian fundamentalism from moderate Christians when Timothy McVeigh put on his bomb show in Oklahoma? I may be wrong, but I do not remember Billy Graham & Co. (or anybody for that matter) leading rallies to repudiate the Christian Identity movement and other such. (Whether McVeigh formally belonged or not is debatable, but the influence is undeniable and was widely commented at the time.) It also has been years and I do not recall over those all those years hardly any commentary at all from moderate Christians.

Why are moderate Muslims being held to a different standard?

Michael

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Bad approach. If thine enemy smite thee on thy cheek (in other words, it is not an accident) then tear his head off and shit down his neck. After which burn his property and slaughter his family to the second order of consanguinity. If this is done consistently, people will stop smiting thee on thy cheek. An accident, I might forgive. An attack on Me and Mine, never.

And for you O'ists Out There, recall that Ayn Rand has taught that in an emergency, all bets are off, so don't be squeamish.

The Rule is simple.

a. Protect and cherish your friends.

b. Be polite to neutrals who have not harmed you and might even benefit you.

c. Destroy your enemies. Wipe them from the face of the earth.

Do this consistently and you will have no enemies after a while. Then you can be a Nice Guy for a bit.

Nice to who?

You are implicitly positing moral equivalence between Israel and its enemies who are trying to do their best to follow your "philosophy." It's force rules, absolutely. Everything else is blather, including your blather. If Israel has no moral justification the Jews there might as well pack up and leave.

--Brant

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Where were all the demonstrations against Christian fundamentalism from moderate Christians when Timothy McVeigh put on his bomb show in Oklahoma? I may be wrong, but I do not remember Billy Graham & Co. (or anybody for that matter) leading rallies to repudiate the Christian Identity movement and other such. (Whether McVeigh formally belonged or not is debatable, but the influence is undeniable and was widely commented at the time.) It also has been years and I do not recall over those all those years hardly any commentary at all from moderate Christians.

Ummm.....Michael.......pssst....I live in an area 6 miles from McVeigh's original home here in Florida, an area permeated with Christian fundamentalist types, and with whom I share much common ground. Part of that common ground is this: McVeigh was no Christian. His position is seen as a (possibly brainwashed) godless government patsy in the line of Ruby Ridge-WTC I-Waco-OK City-Flight 800-USS Cole-IIBT-WTC II-Afghanistan-Iraq-Burma, i.e., the elitist political program. Perpetual terror for perpetual war: perpetual war for perpetual power.

And though the Church as a collection of collectivist institutions has had (more than) its share of powermongering, that has nothing to do with what McVeigh did, nor with what individual Christians believe.

Even if someone associates with a racist group called "Christian Identity", does that make it Christian? Or to put it another way, if I (hypothetically) started to call my approach "Theistic Christian Objectivism", would that make it Objectivism? Does calling make it so?

No. It doesn't.

What makes it so is properly identifying what it is you are focusing on, identifying the relevant characteristics for the type of object you are observing, and guaranteeing by observation that there is ONE EGG of these relevant characteristics in the present instance, to allow identification between the specific object and your concept of it.

In your equation mcveigh = christian, you have not done this. So the Christian leadership, though sharing your (and my) horror at the bestiality of mcveigh's actions, have no moral responsibility to repudiate in this case; your chosen example is irrelevant.

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In your equation mcveigh = christian, you have not done this. So the Christian leadership, though sharing your (and my) horror at the bestiality of mcveigh's actions, have no moral responsibility to repudiate in this case; your chosen example is irrelevant.

Steve,

You are actually proving my point. (btw - If you want quotes from articles citing the influence of Christian Identity on McVeigh, simply Google it and they appear.)

Do you believe that, say, Sufi Muslims have the moral responsibility to take to the streets to repudiate Islamist terrorists? According to them, Islamist terrorists are not really practicing Islam, but instead some kind of perversion of it. You asked:

Even if someone associates with a racist group called "Christian Identity", does that make it Christian? Or to put it another way, if I (hypothetically) started to call my approach "Theistic Christian Objectivism", would that make it Objectivism? Does calling make it so?

No. It doesn't.

I can equally imagine a Sufi Muslim asking the same thing about Islamist terrorists, i.e., if someone associates with a terrorist group called "Al Qaeda" or even "Muslim Brotherhood," does that make it Islam? I can imagine them saying (as you did), "No. It doesn't."

Thus I see a double standard being used in placing that burden on them.

The right way is now finally occurring. Instead of an enraged crowd demanding spontaneous demonstrations by moderate Muslims against Islamist terrorists, the reasonable thing is now happening. People are actually asking moderate Muslims what they think and reporting this. And, surprise! Moderate Muslims have no problem repudiating the terrorists when asked and not screamed at.

Just like Christians have no problem repudiating McVeigh and "Christian Identity" when asked.

(Funding channels are now being placed around the world to allow moderate Muslims to have a more public voice, but that is another question. This is being done to combat the massive overseas funding from Saudi Arabia of Wahhabism.)

Michael

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MSK:

~ You ask me several, dare I say 'loaded', questions.

~ Rather than specify quotes, I'll generically respond.

~ I've no interest in 'rational' arguing with those I consider irrelevent to doing such (as I've implied already in this thread!) with. The 'Moderates' need to up their antes re THEIR arguing with the 'Fundies'; until then, neither are worth *my* 'discussing' anything with, internet-chats or otherwise. It's ONLY the Fundies I'm concerned with, and how they already...'argue'! How can I spell this out better?

~ Re 'demonstrations' about McVeigh and Christian idiots, no 'double-standard' here. What're you talking about bringing THAT insinuation up? They're homegrown, akin to our own SkinHeads and freak-offspring of the KKK, and deserve getting what they do to others...of our own *citizens.*

~ THEY are not the cultural/national threat we are facing...hello? --- Spare me 'double-standard' rhetoric here, Mike.

LLAP

J:D

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I've no interest in 'rational' arguing with those I consider irrelevent to doing such (as I've implied already in this thread!) with.

. . .

Spare me 'double-standard' rhetoric here, Mike.

John,

I was in the context of rational discussion, not rhetoric. I thought you were, too. Sorry. As you are clearly not there, I can see how you consider setting rational standards as rhetoric.

I am interested in persuading THEM, not merely bitching to US. We have different goals.

Michael

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MSK:

~ May I ask: W-H-I-C-H 'THEM' do you mean of the 2 groups I've referred to? The 'Moderates'...or the 'Fundies'?

~ Further, I ask: 'persuade' them...of just exactly what? To be more liberal (if 'them' = the Moderates)...or stop killing-from-hate-of-disagreers (if 'them' =the Fundies)?

~ Lastly, if you think that *I*'m using mere rhetoric on this subject, methinks we have a big mis-understanding re my supposedly using double-standards re Christian idiots, since I didn't bring them up.

LLAP

J:D

Edited by John Dailey
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John,

I have posted often on this (and consistently), but I will repeat it once more.

I am interested in getting moderate Muslims to start thinking about formally adopting individual rights and separation of church and state as part of their thinking. They actually do this by default, but they have not verbalized it.

I believe in letting the military and secret services take care of the violent Islamists, since I think they are mostly beyond persuasion by words.

Michael

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MSK:

~ My concern is, as I've explicated, primarily with the Fundies ("Be prepared; be VERY 'prepared'"), and only secondarily with the Moddies (There's more reason nowadays for 'gun-rights', methinks.) You wish to 'convert' the Mods, hey, be my guest. A very good, worthwhile, l-o-n-g term project, it be...for those so oriented. The Mods are not a concern/problem for me; 'live-and-let-live', I say; conversion is not on my 'to-do' list in life.

~ Still, U-N-T-I-L such conversion occurs, I expect, as I've said, the Mods to be irrelevent to the prob we have with the Funds. We really have no prob with the Mods, correct? That is, other than they're advertising showing absolutely NO backbone against the Funds, correct?

LLAP

J:D

Edited by John Dailey
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~ I must caveat my last statement. There have been some exceptions to 'showing backbone.' Interestingly, they've all been FEMALE (wonder why?)

~ Glenn Beck (regardless what one thinks of him) has been pushing this perspective this week re 'Islamo-Fascism' and, has brought up an interesting point: No noted 'women's-rights' group is supporting the back-boned females condemning the Fundies. NONE.

~ Methinks that arguing with mere 'Moderates' and merely leaving the Fundies to be dealt with by 'the military and secret services' (aka: 'professional others')...is whistling in the wind; it's acting no different than...the Moderates themselves: looking the other way.

LLAP

J:D

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~ I must caveat my last statement. There have been some exceptions to 'showing backbone.' Interestingly, they've all been FEMALE (wonder why?)

~ Glenn Beck (regardless what one thinks of him) has been pushing this perspective this week re 'Islamo-Fascism' and, has brought up an interesting point: No noted 'women's-rights' group is supporting the back-boned females condemning the Fundies. NONE.

~ Methinks that arguing with mere 'Moderates' and merely leaving the Fundies to be dealt with by 'the military and secret services' (aka: 'professional others')...is whistling in the wind; it's acting no different than...the Moderates themselves: looking the other way.

LLAP

J:D

Beck is a libertarian/conservative. Converted to Mormonism. Ex-drug addict and alcoholic. "Riddled with ADD" as he constantly refers to his "jumping" from idea to idea. Extremely intelligent, self-educated and a fully complete set of balls.

Quite impressive and hilariously funny.

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MSK:

~ Let's agree that we're not on the same page-CONCERNS, ok? (We're probably not in the same book!)

~ You're interested in...persuading Moderates to see-the-light about individual rights superceding their own, established-from-childhood, 'moderate' interpretations of the Qu'ran, correct?

~ *I*'m interested in...observing (wherever I can find such) the Moderates in CONDEMNING what their brethren Fundies do.

~ I observe very, very, VERY...little of this occurring

~ THAT's my prob with the 'Mod's. Convert them all you can; and...good luck on its worth.

LLAP

J:D

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Selene:

~ Yes. We ALL have our evaluations of varied commentators. I did caveat my ref to him as "...whatever one thinks of him..." ok? I, as others who've seen his programs, are aware of where he's at and comes from; ntl, I only ref'd him because of the point I was making re he being the only MSM one MAKING THAT POINT.

~ Regarding the subject matter herein, do you have anything pertinent to add...other than more on his personal history (which most of us are probably as aware of as of O' Reilly's)?

LLAP

J:D

PS: At least he's not on 'FOX'

Edited by John Dailey
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John,

I have no problem condemning Islamist fanatics. I do have a problem condemning moderate Muslims as if they were Islamist fanatics. And the start of that problem is not even ideological. It is epistemological. I believe incorrect identification as the basis for further reasoning leads to horrible results. In ALL cases, if the person will not recognize reality for what it is and not what he/she pretends it is, then reality will assert itself harshly at some point.

The idea of "converting" moderate Muslims (as you characterized it) presupposes that I am preaching. This is not precise. As I stated, I think individual rights and separation of church and state are present in their lives de facto, but not verbalized as such—just like reason is in many Christian lives. My intention (through discussion and not through preaching) is to try to convince some of them to own up to this by thinking about it with their own minds. I have no wish to control the thinking of anyone. I trust the good will present in all reasonable people to want to do the right thing. They merely need to see that what they already practice in general has other words (which, incidentally, do not sanction Islamist fanatics as parts of the Qu'ran does).

I see no point in trying to engage in such a discussion by telling the Muslim that I consider him or her to be deluded scum because Islam is evil, etc. etc. etc. That is a perfect recipe for nudging that person into defending Islamist fanatics for no other reason than feeling unjustly attacked. And such a comment is an unjust attack. (I am not saying you do this, but many on Objectivist boards do.)

Incidentally, there are more prominent (usually former) Muslim women than men speaking out against Islamist fanatics (like Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Wafta Sultan) right now, but there are prominent men including former terrorists. This is growing and nothing is going to stop it. I believe the women are more prominent right now because of their lower status rights-wise under Islam. They already have a personal stake as being members of a class suffering discrimination.

I am curious about a comment you keep making. You keep saying moderates are irrelevant to the problem, but then complain (essentially) that they are contributing to the problem by not taking to the streets to condemn the fanatics. Do you see a problem when I put it that way? :)

Michael

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MSK:

~ To answer your last question...other than your stressed phrasing 'to the streets' (I mean, there is TV, right?...not to mention the mosques themselves!)...no, no prob. Indeed, other than that, that's a good paraphrase of my prob with the 'Mods.' As I pointed out, they have no prob complaining how non-Muslims now (for whatever reasons) view Muslims. --- They apparently aren't aware of the non-Muslim saying about "For evil to flourish, such needs merely that good men [here: Muslims] do nothing."

~ I regard them, not in 'comments', but within my main point, as irrelevent precisely because they do not, as you say (streets or otherwise)... 'condemn the fanatics.'

~ In such a case, it's hard to distinguish the two, all said and done.

LLAP

J:D

Edited by John Dailey
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ADDENDUM:

~ Interestingly, the ones who have shown 'backbone' (a couple of whom have newsworthily died as a result) are clearly NOT whom I would include as...'Moderates.' The Moderates are ostriches incidentally aiding and abetting the fanatics by NOT condemning them...in their own mosques, as well as TV (ok: add your 'streets' as well.) --- The Mods advertisingly make themselves (can I say distractingly?) irrelevent to all non-Muslim's probs with the 'Mods' uncondemned Fundamentalist brethren.

LLAP

J:D

Edited by John Dailey
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Selene:

~ Yes. We ALL have our evaluations of varied commentators. I did caveat my ref to him as "...whatever one thinks of him..." ok? I, as others who've seen his programs, are aware of where he's at and comes from; ntl, I only ref'd him because of the point I was making re he being the only MSM one MAKING THAT POINT.

~ Regarding the subject matter herein, do you have anything pertinent to add...other than more on his personal history (which most of us are probably as aware of as of O' Reilly's)?

LLAP

J:D

PS: At least he's not on 'FOX'

As I have said, I am new here and have a limited knowledge of who knows what about whom. Those are the objective facts that I know about him and that I personally think he is hilarious. I do not watch Fox except for football and a special debate, so I am not aware of what you PS means.

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You won't quite believe which two American writers the Pope has read!

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html...;pagewanted=all

Barbara

I will bet you a bushel and a peck that JP2 rejected Rand out of hand after reading AS.

I am more curious to know if the current Bishop of Rome, Benny 16 has read "Mein Kampf". Does he address God as "Mein Fuhrer"? Is Benny 16 a closet anti-semite as was Pope Pius XII? Wer weisst?

Ba'al Chatzaf

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John,

I believe your characterization about moderate Muslims not condemning Islamist fanatics to be in error, as given by the copious links I have provided at several places on this site. And this habit among moderates is growing daily.

My suggestion is to read and see for yourself, otherwise the ostrich will not be them, but you. It is easy and even fun to paint with an overly-broad brush (I catch myself doing it at times), but it is objective to examine the facts.

(I also stand by my observation that if the obligation for loud condemnation of fanatics is to be assigned to moderate Muslims, then it is only fair that the same obligation must be assigned to moderate Christians, moderate Jews, etc., in their respective religions, but that is another issue. For the sake of argument, though, where are the moderate Catholics condemning the pedophilia of the different outed priests, who were not even fanatics to be evil?)

Michael

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MSK:

~ I do not 'paint with an overly-broad brush' re those supposed 'Moderate' Muslims who clearly and advertisingly, do NOT support the anti-fanatics (who are still alive) who lay their lives on the public line. These 'Moderates' ARE therefore 'ostriches' unlike those who dare speak out.

~ You wish to discuss the other religion-peoples who show hypocritical probs...in THIS context? Why? THIS is the (or *your*) important 'issue'? What ALL religions show hypocritalness about? And why don't we discuss them ALL?

~ We're definitely not in the same book here, nm page. What hypocritical Christians (or Shintoists/etc) have to do with our worries about a 9-11 follow-up, I have no idea. No 'double/quintuple-standards' here. Muslim Fundamentalists are *our* main prob right now, and their extremely quiet 'Moderate' brethren make themselves a secondary one...by being quiet. Christians are as irrelevent to this as...Roman pagans. --- Sheesh.

LLAP

J:D

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... and their extremely quiet 'Moderate' brethren make themselves a secondary one...by being quiet.

John,

Which is it? Are the moderates irrelevant or are they a problem to you? You have claimed both.

And I still ask, why ignore what is occurring—i.e., the increasing public statements by moderates against Islamist fanatics? Why ignore that? The facts certainly contradict what you are saying about their "extremely quiet" behavior. I have provided links, and others are easy to find on Google.

Michael

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