Truth Before Dishonor

I would rather be right than popular

Archive for the ‘Philosophy’ Category

You are a modern liberal …

Posted by DNW on 2014/07/21

 

 

You are a modern liberal

… and you don’t believe in natural rights.

Ok … let’s ask some questions which may even seem silly at first, but which, in the asking, will clear away some of the unhappy vagueness we tend to live with out of social politeness or the fear of seeming too radical.

So:

Do you have, let’s say, a right to breathe? If so, where does this “right” come from? An act of Congress?

Do you have a right to be served by others? If so;

Do they have a right to be served by you? If so;

Do they have a right to serve themselves by not serving you?

 

The questions are too general or abstract or silly or provocative you say? And anyway, it all depends, you say? Alright then, “it all depends”.

In hopes of making some kind of progress, let’s wave away any of the question begging “balancing of rights” or “cultural context” distractions into which you would like segue, and try to press forward instead.

To continue on a slightly different tack.

Do you (yeah you personally) let’s say, have a right to speak freely? If the answer is “yes”, is that “right” merely a contingent legal permission – be it constitutional, statutory, whatever – which you for the time being enjoy? Can you equally well be deprived of that permission in a way which would leave you with no rational cause for complaint to someone else? If you cannot so be deprived without a rational cause for complaint to someone else, do you then claim a more basic right to that express right? If so, how, or upon what, is that claim grounded?

 

You are a modern liberal; and, let’s say for the sake of argument, that I am not.

And you’re determined that you are not  going to “fall for” any of the questions I have asked. A “right” you insist and will boldly maintain, is nothing more than an arbitrarily recognized social permission – that tolerance or support which others are habituated or intimidated into conceding to you. Usually written down if it is to mean anything.

You then as a modern liberal, consistently and without exception or proviso do assert and affirm that the concept of “rights” really renders down to what are in essence, no more than social permissions; having no other objective grounding or reality.

So now, let’s say that you the modern liberal, and I the not-modern-liberal find ourselves on an island. One with no law books.

I’m stronger that you are and … Yeah, yeah, trust me, I am. And, and anyway as I was about to say, although there is enough for both of us to survive, if I kill you now, I can live more than just comfortably. Besides, I find your weakness and whiny-ness annoying.

If I do kill you, have I done anything objectively wrong? If so what is it, and how do you know? Have I thereby, on this law book free island, deprived you of anything that could be called “rights”? Is my killing of you, “unjust” in any sense, even though no judicial writ runs here? If so, then how so; and, how do you know?

Have you any reason to complain over an injustice in my act? Notice I said “reason”; and notice that your utility to me is not an issue here. How would all this be balanced out under a social permission theory of rights?

Well now, I don’t really expect you as a liberal to answer these questions, or to take them seriously, or even to grant that the framing of the speculations is something you would abide or tolerate.

Because of course, these questions are not really meant to change a liberal mind regarding the nature and status of rights by means of pointing out just how incoherent the liberal use of the term rights is, when the term is used in the sense conceived of, and conceded by, liberals.

I know this because I have wasted many hours attempting to get modern-liberals to explain themselves: and their strategy has been, without exception, to either refuse to do so, or to shelter behind the terminology of a moral worldview which they in fact reject.

You liberals, high-minded or low, already know all this too. You know, explicitly or implicitly that you are are spouting clandestinely self-serving rhetoric not reason, and emoting, not deducing, when you speak of “rights”.

So what’s the point?

The point is that: what this exercise is really meant to do is to remind non-liberals that, in the final analysis, modern liberals are motivated by a simple will to power and/or by urges which they themselves don’t care to justify or explore too deeply.

This is a fact of social life which non-liberals need to face, and of which they need to steadily keep reminding themselves.

Liberals are able not only to readily face this view of themselves, they ultimately embrace it; and when pushed to the wall, they will even proclaim it. They see it – entropy, inherent meaninglessness, and ultimate nothingness – as a state of affairs which grants them freedom from ultimate consequences. Insofar of course, as there is a coherent “they” to them, and insofar as “freedom” has any any meaning, insofar as consequences have any significance, and insofar, insofar, insofar …

So, isn’t it about time that conservatives become brave enough to face what it is that liberals are blithely admitting about themselves as liberals?

Its only prudent, after all.

 

Posted in Conservative, Culture, Liberal, Philosophy, Real Life, society, Uncategorized | 3 Comments »

Abortion Stories As Told By Abortion Survivors

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/07/20

In light of Senate Democrats’ 100 percent vote to allow abortion on demand until the day a child is born, in an attempt to stop the various States from enacting any restrictions or protections, I have decided to reprint an article I wrote in 2012.

From Teen Breaks.com:

Gianna Jessen
My name is Gianna Jessen… I was aborted, and I did not die. My biological mother was 7 months pregnant when she went to Planned Parenthood in southern California, and they advised her to have a late-term saline abortion.

A saline abortion is a solution of salt saline that is injected into the mother’s womb. The baby then gulps the solution. It burns the baby inside and out, and then the mother is to deliver a dead baby within 24 hours.

This happened to me! I remained in the solution for approximately 18 hours and was delivered ALIVE… in a California abortion clinic. There were young women in the room who had already been given their injections and were waiting to deliver dead babies. When they saw me the abortionist was not yet on duty and had me transferred to the hospital.

I should be blind, burned… I should be dead! And yet, I live! Due to a lack of oxygen supply during the abortion I live with cerebral palsy.

When I was diagnosed with this, all I could do was lie there. They said that was all I would ever do! Through prayer and hard work by my foster mother, I was walking at age 3 ½ with the help of a walker and leg braces. At that time I was also adopted into a wonderful family. Today I am left only with a slight limp. I no longer have need of a walker or leg braces.

…Death did not prevail over me… and I am so thankful!

Teen Breaks has more stories from abortion survivors. Teen Breaks is ready, willing, and able to help teens out. You don’t have to be pregnant, or even a girl, to reach out to them. They’re there to provide a loving environment, information, and a community of support for you as you are bombarded by pressures and life’s travails. If you’re a “cutter”, cutting yourself to regain a sense of control or to zone out or to get relief from life’s stresses, you’re not alone. 1 in 200 teen girls have done it. Teen Breaks is there for you, ready to help you.

Pregnant and need help?
You can talk with someone by phone, e-mail, text, chat live online or be shown where there is a pregnancy center near you. And remember, everything is confidential and free!
OptionlineLogoChatFrame

Click above to chat live or text “TEEN” to 313131.

Claire Culwell’s April 2010 story from Stand For Life:

Putting a Face To What You’re Fighting For

By Claire Culwell

 

A year ago, when I was 21 years old, I met the woman who gave birth to me. I had always dreamed about the day I would meet her, and it NEVER involved the most significant part of it all…learning that I was an ABORTION SURVIVOR. She was 13 years old when she became pregnant with me and the only option she knew of (according to her mother) was abortion. She proceeded to go to an abortion clinic nearby where she had an abortion. A few weeks later she realized she was still pregnant and decided to go to an out-of-state late-term abortion clinic to have a second abortion. During her examination at the late-term abortion clinic, she was told that she had been pregnant with TWINS. One was aborted, and one survived. She was also told that it was too late to have even a late-term abortion. She decided to give me up for adoption when I was born two weeks later. If you ask her now, she will tell you that if she had known the results of abortion vs. adoption, she would have gone straight to the adoption agency instead. Putting me up for adoption (and giving me the best family I can imagine) was a life-changing decision for all of us.

Because of the abortion, I was born 2 ½ months premature and weighed 3 lbs 2 oz. I was on life support and had to stay in the hospital for 2 ½ months until I could be brought home. My hips were dislocated and my feet were turned (because during the abortion, the sac that held my body together was broken) and when I was brought home I had 2 casts on my feet and a harness. I was put in a body cast for 4 months, and I didn’t walk until I was over 2 years old. It still affects me even today.

[continue reading at the above link]

And Claire Culwell’s amazing 2011 video:

Posted in abortion, Character, Christianity, Culture, education, Elections, Health, Health Care, Law, Liberal, media, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politically correct, Politically Incorrect, politics, Pro-Life, Real Life, society, truth, Youth | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Pro-Life? Can’t Vote Democrat

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/07/19

The Editor of The First Street Journal found another lying Democrat. There are some rules of writing that say when a word is defined in part by a qualifier, the qualifier is unnecessarily redundant; therefore, it is unnecessarily redundant to add the qualifier “lying” to the word “Democrat”. Democrats win elections by lying. There is a good chance that Democrats would never have more than a small minority position in most State Legislatures and the US government without their lies. Republicans want to throw granny over the cliff. Republicans have a war on women. Republicans are all racists. Heck, the race card has been so overplayed as to not mean anything anymore. Democrats have fought for all the Civil Rights Laws we have in this country. The long list of proven Democrat lies could go on forever. So what’s so important that the Editor of The First Street Journal would point out another Democrat lying? It’s the Pro-Life nature of the Democrat. Or, rather, it’s the lie that he’s in any way Pro-Life at all.

Well, we have just found out how pro-life Senator Casey really is. The pro-abortion forces introduced S. 1696, the Women’s Health Protection Act, which is designed to eliminate state restrictions on abortion, through the entire nine months of pregnancy. It was in response to restrictions imposed in states like Texas, where abortion clinics are required to meet rigorous safety and health standards. The Texas law1 is designed, unquestionably, to reduce the number of abortion clinics in the Lone Star State, but it was also in response to “Dr” Kermit Gosnell’s little shop of horrors. When it came time to actually vote on S. 1696, the devout Roman Catholic, pro-life Senator Casey, who represents the state in which “Dr” Gosnell was “practicing,” voted for the bill, as did every other Democrat in the Senate.2

With that vote, Senator Casey just told us, through deeds, that his words are nothing but lies. Senator Casey could have attempted to provide some “moderation,” some bit of pro-life sentiment, which he claims to have, by voting against the bill, because, in the end, the bill is both symbolic and meaningless: its chance of passage by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is infinitesimally small.


If you’re Pro-Life, you cannot vote Democrat. Because Democrats are only Pro-Life to get your vote. Afterward, they are pro-abort in every sense of the word. But you also have to be careful which Republican gets your vote. Because there’s more than one Republican who is pro-abort. And no Democrat wants you to see the photos to the left, because that might make you vote against the Democrat and against abortion on demand.

Posted in abortion, Character, Christianity, Conservative, Culture, Elections, Health Care, history, Law, Liberal, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politically correct, politics, Pro-Life, society, truth | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Progressives, Mainstream Media Are Anti-Semites

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/07/18

Sorry for the redundancy in the headline. While Truth Before Dishonor is decidedly pro-Israel, as is any Bible-believing Christian, the Democrat Party, as shown in their loudly booing the insertion of pro-Israel language in its platform in 2012, Progressives, Mainstream Media (brought to you by the Redundant Department of Redundancy) are decidedly anti-Israel. To the extreme that they support Islamic Jihadists, Islamic terrorists, child-murdering war criminals against the peace-desiring, self-defense-minded, self-preservation minded Israelis and the only nation in the Middle-East that is both Democratic and tolerant of Mohammedism, Christianity, Judaism, atheism.

From Robert Stacy McCain:

Here’s how the liberal mind works: The only thing they need to know is, “Who’s the victim of oppression?” Once the liberal media decides Palestinians are victims and Israelis are oppressors, it doesn’t matter what actually happens — Hamas suicide bombers blowing up busloads of innocent Israelis, launching missiles at Tel Aviv, whatever — the victim/oppressor dynamic controls the narrative.

Stand for Freedom.
Stand for religious tolerance.
Stand for Democratic rule of Law.
Stand against genocide.
Stand against bigotry.

Stand up for the right of Israel to exist and Jews to live.
Down with the lying Media. Down with the lying Hamas and State-sponsored Terrorism.

Posted in Christianity, crime, Culture, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Liberal, media, Philosophy, politically correct, Politically Incorrect, politics, Religion, society, terrorists, truth, war | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Wisconsin Democrat Prosecutors Not Having Fun

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/07/18

HT Hogewash

Wisconsin, known as “The birthplace of Progressivism” (view with a grain of salt), had recall elections that didn’t work out so well for Democrats after Governor Walker and the Republicans passed sweeping reforms that severely cut into the slush money Public Employee Unions (and their off-shoots) got out of their subjects — reforms the Democrats tried to stop by fleeing the state instead of doing their jobs.

Then came the highly partisan, highly secretive, highly unconstitutional, highly intimidating raids and political rectal exams of Conservative groups fighting the Leftist recall attempts and Leftist big money (which have never been investigated). Followed by Conservative legal pushback to protect the rights of all individuals from Fascist tyranny.

And the Democrat prosecutors, not used to having to defend their heavy-handed partisan intimidation tactics, are losing court battles and not liking it one bit.

O’Keefe and his Wisconsin Club for Growth have turned their civil rights lawsuit — a complaint many legal experts believed would be an uphill battle at best — into ground-breaking litigation to be reckoned with.

It certainly has demanded the attention of John Doe prosecutors turned defendants: Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, the Democrat who launched the secret probe into dozens of conservative organizations in the summer of 2012; two of Chisholm’s assistant DAs; John Doe special prosecutor Francis Schmitz; and Dean Nickel, a shadowy investigator contracted by the state Government Accountability Board.

Some say the prosecutors, not used to being on the defensive, are sounding a little nervous these days, maybe even hostile. Their filings in federal court of late come across as condescending, and testy.

Who could blame them? There’s much at stake for Chisholm and crew – beyond the forced termination of the probe they’ve pushed for nearly two years.

In comes Wisconsin’s Attorney General, who has declared that, according to State Law, the Government Accountability Board doesn’t have to be accountable to the general public. Orwellian barely covers what Wisconsin’s law, written by Progressives, does to actual word definitions.

MADISON, Wis. — It appears the state Government Accountability Board will be able to keep its secrets from the public eye.

In an opinion [pdf] issued Thursday, Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said the GAB “may not” turn over its confidential investigative records to the Legislative Audit Bureau because “there is no specific authorization for it do so.”

Now the leaders of the Legislature’s audit committee say they might change the law to open up the records.

The Legislature has provided specific authorizations of confidential information in other circumstances, Van Hollen wrote, but the audit bureau’s right to access documents under Wisconsin statute only provides a “general right” access, and no specific authorization to access confidential records.

So, according to Wisconsin’s Attorney General, Wisconsin law states that the Government Accountability Board is not accountable to the Legislative Audit Bureau or the people who elect their government officials. Once the Federal judge who demanded the total destruction of the material unconstitutionally taken in hyper-partisan raids finds out the GAB is not releasing information, he’s going to have something to say about that.

This is Progressivism trying to hang onto its Fascist tyranny and avoid being accountable for its wholly unconstitutional intimidation of all who stand against Government Control of everything.
__________________________
For more information of who was involved in the protests, including information destroying the Leftists’ Godwinning of Walker and Republicans, see Restoring Honor Now.

Also read the 96 articles (so far) by Watchdog.org in this surreal unfolding tale of overreaching government and pushback by regular citizens.

Posted in 1st Amendment, Character, Conservative, Constitution, Constitution Shredded, crime, Culture, Elections, funny business, history, Law, Liberal, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politically correct, politics, Socialists, society, truth | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Where Hamas Hides Their Missiles Used In Killing Children

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/07/14

Any questions?

Posted in Character, Culture, genocide, Islam, Israel, media, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politically correct, politics, Religion, society, terrorists, truth, war | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

The real freedom fighters

Posted by DNW on 2014/07/02

 

The Fourth of July is nearing, and perhaps it’s time to again give a little recognition to that quickly passing generation: those who served in WWII

I’ve already placed some images from my family archive on the Veteran’s Day entry, including an image of my Father manning a Bofors training piece, as well as photos both by, and of, my uncle taken in France and Germany. Fortunately, both my father and my uncle are yet with us, with my father being in remarkably good health.

But I thought that here I’d mention another man of that generation. This one, unrelated to me, but a man whom I was privileged to get to know quite well through business.

His long-time nickname, used even in correspondence and on memos, was “Obie”.  And I assure you that despite his white hair it had NOTHING whatsoever to do with Star Wars, but everything to do with his initials.

I won’t give out his last name here. But anyone stumbling across the image further down, and seeming to recognize the older man on the right, while recalling an acquaintance with the Christian name of “Roswell Edison …” would have the identity.

Obie’s been gone over a decade now. And as I think back on it, the image below was probably taken of us not too long before his passing. I think, at his own request.

He was a talented man, who had among his various experiences trained as a fighter pilot during the war [for flying Thunderbolts as I recall], but who was never actually sent into combat due to a declining need for officer pilots overseas.

It was obvious however that his Air Corps pilot qualifying and training experience had had a life-long effect on him. Moreso perhaps than having also gone to college, something that traditionally shapes the young man for the future.

He was disciplined, orderly, assertive and aggressive in a positive sense, and prided himself on his ability to, as they would nowadays say, adapt and overcome. He was also good humored and quick witted, if somewhat wry.

One quirk that he did have was that of good-naturedly “testing” people. That is to say, he presented them with, possibly disquieting, little challenges just in order to judge how they would handle the matter. He attributed the impulse to something originating in his officer candidate training experiences. He said that they would throw little shocks at you so as to determine how well and how maturely you could handle them. I suppose it was to see if you had the right stuff to fly combat.

I, don’t know. Maybe he just liked subtle, slightly provoking jokes.

Eventually, I one day turned to him and said, “Haven’t we known each other for years now?” He acknowledged we had.

“And haven’t you had your “testing” fun repeatedly, and found I’m pretty much unflappable?  After all I know it’s a game.

He acknowledged as much.

“You have yourself referred to me as a good friend, despite our generational differences?”  Yes, that was true too, he admitted.

“So what’s the further point”?

He laughed and acknowledged there was no longer any. And that was that, the end of it.

Some people didn’t take it so well, but hey, that’s life. On the other hand, some did.

One instance of the kind of response I think he was looking for and know he appreciated, occurred during a long drive back to the city wherein we had to pass through some small lakeside resort town about mid-afternoon and late season. Not having had lunch, and with no obvious place to go anywhere in sight, we loosened our ties, left our jackets in the car, and got out at a slightly fru-fru looking deli-and ice cream shop, only to find it manned by a lone high-school aged girl of indomitably cheerful disposition.

Being naturally cheerful himself, Obie wasted no time after placing the carryout order in engaging in what was a transparently fake curmudgeon-like mini-lecture on how he expected the sandwich to be the best he ever had considering the prices and the tony pretensions of the place. She assured him it would be. “Oh yeah, how do you know?”

“Because”, she happily announced while looking right back at him, “I’m making it myself!”

He beamed at her like she was his own granddaughter. “That’s what I’m talking about!” he said, turning to me.

“Yeah, that’s fine but let’s have a little fewer of these demonstrations of how the human spirit can rise to the occasion, eh?”

He was a good citizen. And as well as a long term USAF Reserve or National Guard pilot (I’ve now forgotten which) who enjoyed flying his own private plane, he was a volunteer fireman back when his upscale township was still semi-rural, and a proficient HAM radio operator, who was always ready to assist in emergencies.

He tried to get me interested in “HAM” radio operation.  But even then it was in what I supposed was its waning days; and although a serious involvement probably serves as a practical entre into electronics, I was never able to build up any interest in it.

I always did admire his draughtsmanship though, as he had spent some post-college time on the board before moving on and up. That, skill in technical drawing and lettering, is something CAD and Graphics courses had never given me, much less the subjects of philosophy and the history of law.

Obie was also, and the significance of this trait may at first seem elusive, a good and conscientious record keeper. The point here being the diligence, care, and sense of responsibility he felt for important matters he had been involved in, and toward those who might need to rely on an accurate and truthful record.

This no doubt seems a very small matter and hardly worth mentioning as a character related trait, until one reflects on where we as a nation are when even Federal agencies now “lose” information at their apparent convenience.

It has to do with moral responsibility, you see.

Fighter pilot on the right

The fighter pilot is on the right

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That acceptance of responsibility, and courage and grace in the face of it,  came through clearly as he eventually faced death.

He had been for many years, a smoker, and admitted that it was unwise. But, he stated frankly that it was a powerful habit dating back to his military days, and one which afforded him certain benefits in stressful situations. After getting to know him well,  I suggested – over drinks – that he stop smoking; while making it plain that I would only suggest it to him that once. He candidly, and even vulnerably replied that although he was as I certainly knew, proud of his ability to “handle any situation”, this one, had him more or less licked. To closely paraphrase, he told me, “My daughters have come up to me crying, pleading with me to quit, and I have tried … but it creeps back.”

As this was just about the time our national anti-smoking mania was climbing toward its peak, it’s probably not surprising to hear that once he was discovered with “shadows” or spots on his lungs, and the diagnosis became “terminal without treatment, likely terminal with”, one of his attending physicians, a zealous young man, decided to deliver a priggish little anti-smoking homily, along with the dismal verdict.

I guess the fellow felt morally entitled to righteously rub the dose in. To which performance, Obie, as he told it, responded:  “Stop right there. You’ve delivered the prognosis. You’ve done your duty.  You can go, and save the preaching  for someone else.” [I think upon reflection, that what Obie actually told me was that he got peeved enough with the doctor in his own hospital to use the words "you're dismissed" with him . "I told him, 'You're dismissed" ' .]

At which point, he said, the medical commissar rose in a huff and walked out of the room, never to reappear as one of his attending again.

Obie then, after thinking it over for a bit, decided to forgo any surgical or radiation treatment, in favor of a few palliative measures.

He told me that his age peers among the doctors, informed him after the fact, that that is just what they would have done under the same circumstances. This palliative treatment eventually included the regular draining of fluid build-ups around his lungs. It was a procedure wherein he as patient granted supervised medical trainees permission to work on him as a means of assisting them in the development of their medical skills.  No record exists of what if anything the young medical prig made of this gesture.

He had, as I recall, about seven to ten good months during which he still visited the office, several more of moderate well-being wherein several of us were still able to get together for dinner out, and a couple of more or less house-bound ones that occurred during the course of the year end holidays. After which he passed. I hadn’t seen him since sometime before Thanksgiving, I think.

Obie left behind a well provided for wife, three adult and married daughters, two adult and married sons, some grandchildren, and an enviable record as a citizen and a man.

He represents the kind of men of character America used to produce in abundance. It is for the lack of such men in politics, that this nation and culture suffers as it does today.

 

[Update: Since yesterday and since reentering virtually the same offices and environment in which some of these conversations took place, I've been able to recall more exactly the words and phrasings used in some instances, and have redone them to better, though not perfectly, reflect the actual words used in conversation. I may not be a writer, but I can strive for improved accuracy at least. Also, as usual, I have noticed that I put up what was no better than a draft. Made a couple of changes here and there even adding one telling incident, but I think I'll, again, leave it at that.]

 

Posted in Culture, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, Real Life, society | 2 Comments »

Remember When The Democrat Convention Booed Providence And Israel?

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/06/14

Check this out:

In a new Pew survey, nearly half of respondents said they would be unhappy if a member of their immediate family married an atheist, including 73 percent of conservatives, 51 percent of moderates, and 24 percent of liberals. In fact, liberals were only slightly more likely to be unhappy if a family member married a born-again Christian.

Now, why would any Christian or Jew ever align with the Left? Can you answer me that, Leftist Catholics and Jews?

Posted in Character, Christianity, Culture, Liberal, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politics, Religion, society | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

The Long Road Home

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/06/05

There’s a saying: “You can’t go home again.” Yorkshire wrote about the emotionalist without convictions from the Old Country who found she couldn’t go home again. The resident fifty-dollar-wordsmith (he’s very good with his fifty dollar words) wrote about how the emotionalist emotionalizer tried to rationalize her rationalizations (I’ll leave the big words to the one who is so good with them, heh). Well, my daughter went home again, after 5.5 years in the Army and 15 months in Iraq. And she agrees, you can never really go home again. Everything has changed. Or, like she said, it’s not that everything has changed necessarily, especially in hick-town fly-over country. Sometimes everything has, indeed, changed. Sometimes, it’s that nothing has changed, except for the one who is trying to return. In my daughter’s case, she had changed dramatically and she returned to find everyone she knew from home to be in their same ruts. Floyd still sat in front of the barber shop with next to no customers. Barney still kept his lone bullet in his shirt pocket. Otis was still a drunk. But Laura… Laura had life experiences that forced her to be a different person and made her Rockwell portrait of our hometown completely out of place with reality.

I’m home again. More accurately, I’m in my daughter’s house, having no home of my own. I pay her rent to be able to claim this as my home. But don’t feel too bad for me. I live in my truck. And I’m satisfied with that, for now. See, I have a plan, and that plan requires me to be on the road as much as is possible.

Since March 15, 2013, I had spent a total of 62 hours in my hometown: 30 hours once, 20 hours another time, and 12 hours the third time home. That is, until yesterday. I’m spending yesterday, today, tomorrow at home, leaving out Saturday morning. And I’m really only home now in order to complete an application for a US Passport. I’m just extending my stay, and losing money while doing it.

It costs me about 800 dollars a week to keep up with my truck, if I don’t turn the key to the ignition. So, it’s best that I keep my truck rolling. And my plans of owning a fleet and semi-retiring early require that I keep rolling and maximizing my earnings potential. And that’s what I have been doing.

I leased my truck on June 1, 2013. Since then, I have traveled just over 260,000 miles in my truck and purchased just under 34,000 gallons of fuel, all while training tomorrow’s truck drivers today. I voluntarily stayed on the road for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Easter, Memorial Day, etc, etc. More miles, longer trips, quicker re-loads mean maximized profitability. And means a better opportunity to quit driving altogether more quickly, which is my ultimate goal: I sit at the house and let other drivers make me money. How anti-socialist of me. How American Dream of me. How “corporate shill” (something some clown socialist on Hot Air called me) of this “corporate owner”.

Truth be told, I’m one of the laziest people you will ever meet. And constantly running, constantly rolling, never going home is the ultimate in lazy. It means I can sooner quit working and still living the good life.

But yeah, this retirement community masquerading as a small city is more undesirable that I’ve been gone so much and so long. It feels dreary, too tightly squeezed (after driving across west Texas, west Nebraska, Wyoming, etc), too je ne sais quoi. I spent over 44 years in this town, but it doesn’t feel like home.

It may be emotionalist, and I’m much more into logical than emotionalist, but there it is. I came back, but I’m not home. It just doesn’t have the home feel. The cab and sleeper of my truck has more of a home feel than this place.

Posted in Blogging Matters, Ohio, Philosophy, Real Life, society, truth | Tagged: , , , | 4 Comments »

Informal fallacies?

Posted by DNW on 2014/06/02

Strange how the obvious and already known sometimes hits you right between the eyes with a clarity and force originally lacking, or at least not remembered as there, much, much after the fact.

Say, oh, about thirty-plus years after the fact.

I was driving in the car a day or so ago, and for some reason the concept of “informal fallacies” popped into my head, along with an annoyed internal dialog relating to how the concept had expanded, seemingly exponentially, since I was back in school studying logic and rhetoric.

It seems there is a fallacy for every occasion nowadays, and that they have multiplied as fast as do the political polemicists who frantically brandish them about as if their mere mention constituted evidence of intellectual credentials.

Courtier’s reply! Au contraire, No true Scotsman! No! Argument from authority! Blah blah blah

Irving Copi, a genuine expert in affairs logical, in his famous and widely used university level “Introduction to Logic”, usefully observes (after paragraphs of provisional comments) that, “We may divide informal fallacies into fallacies of relevance and fallacies of ambiguity”

This scope obviously has something to do, as he states the issue, ” … with errors in reasoning into which we may fall either because of carelessness and inattention to our subject matter or through being misled by some ambiguity in the language used to formulate our argument.”

It seems to me that one of the main problems with those who like to bandy charges of fallacious reasoning about, is that they often seem not to understand the supposed issue involved in the fallacy itself.

For example, what some people imagine they have in mind when they charge others with an “appeal to authority”, mystifies me. There is nothing wrong with citing, or appealing to a legitimate authority regarding his area of expertise.

A classic and extreme illustration of the real “fallacy” was provided by old cigarettes ads featuring Hollywood or sports figures who were pictured extolling the virtues certain brands for their power to relax and energize without impairing endurance or health.

On the other hand it’s no error in argument, as Copi notes, to cite, say, a recognized authority on Medieval history on some point of common law bearing on our own times.

But I digress into the morass of the fallaciously polemical use of fallacies.

The point being here, that informal fallacies however they are to be construed, are just that: “not-formal” in the sense of “not a violation of form”. They don’t even rise to that level of error.

They are informal not because of some casualness – though this is often a condition of their appearance – but because they are not the end-product violation of a valid deductive argument form.

They, informal fallacies, thus constitute errors in reasoning which unlike formal fallacies, are not the result of errors which violate as Copi says, “valid patterns of inference”. (Of course these valid patterns themselves  only guarantee that the conclusion asserted validly follows from the premisses when the rules are followed; but not that the conclusion is sound in and of itself, nor that the argument “true” in the way we usually think of truth as reflecting our experienced reality.)

But with the general move away from deductive reasoning as a means of convincing political opponents to yield ground, it’s not surprising that the list of informal fallacies has mushroomed.

Those persons who would not know a modus ponens from a modus tollens, and would probably have a problem intellectually grasping their significance if confronted with the same, can nonetheless muster the resources to shout “NO TRUE SCOTSMAN FALLACY!” at an opponent on the vaguest suspicions of a “violation”, and most inchoate conception of the idea defining the fallacy itself.

There is something nonetheless kind of interesting about some of the “newer” fallacies. And that is that they don’t fit neatly into errors of relevance or ambiguity or even internal or extrapolative construction as with the fallacy of composition; but rather, seem to be laid against claims of intellectual privilege,  definition, and framing: More as if they are describing rhetorical gambits than strict errors of reasoning or inference.

But then I make no claims of expertise in this area and am just recounting some things that crossed my mind the other day as I was driving.

 

Posted in Philosophy, society, truth | Tagged: , | 8 Comments »

Emotions as knowledge?

Posted by DNW on 2014/05/29

 

Or is it emotions, i.e., feelings, as “the only certain knowledge”?

This post is not an argument in favor of “emotional knowledge” whatever that might be taken to mean. Nor is it about some theory of psychological health, involving the integration of all aspects of the human personality.

Instead, it is a momentary reflection on the degrading effects of skepticism, both moral and perhaps epistemological as well, on the ability of the convinced skeptic – if such a term is permissible – to actually engage in moral argument.

This was brought forcefully to mind by a YouTube video posted by Yorkshire on First Street Journal.

In this video we see a youthful British woman clad in sandals and a baggy red shift-like garment reaching to well below the knees, bemoaning the manner in which radical Moslems now inhabiting her old Luton neighborhood are protesting the arrest of the wife of Moslem who had set off a bomb in Stockholm.

What seems to really upset the British girl is the Moslem vitriol; their loudly antagonistic, hateful, and contemptuously hostile way of expressing themselves with respect to the institutions of both the culture and the country which has harbored and sheltered, and if news reports are right, often literally housed and fed them.

She seems especially disturbed by the marchers’ chant that the British police should burn in hell.

Attempting to engage one contemptuous burka clad protester in conversation, she’s informed that she looks naked; and is asked if she is trying to seduce.

Put on some clothes

Put on some clothes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She is told to “Go and put on some clothes”.

She becomes indignant, sputtering, “How you chose to dress like that, I chose to dress like this”.

The British woman then protests that her female critic is “judging” her.

The female marcher cheerfully admits that she is indeed judging the indignant and whiny western woman.

The westerner babbles that she should not be judged because she is not judging the Moslem woman; just as if the Moslem woman actually believed that she and the western woman were moral peers inhabiting the same moral plane.

“I don’t judge you, because I’m above that” says the western woman, while flailing her arms about for emphasis.

“Don’t you dare speak to me like that.” she rails.  ‘This is my hometown as well”:  again, implicitly referring to a moral framework based on respect for persons – even the stupid, weak, and misguided – which assumes a vision of living space and power “sharing”,  at which the Moslems marchers obviously sneer.

The now emotionally wounded westerner continues her own feelings-jihad with, “I try my hardest to sympathize with people who may be different to me, and it’s this tiny minority …”

Ah yes, dear, please say again for the cameras how broadminded and accepting you are. I am sure that that will make the desired impression on the marchers. Once they are sure, you know, that you mean no harm and will respect them.

Hoping then to score rhetorical points along this line by appealing to a male marcher with the concept of “fairness”, she is informed in short order that it is indeed OK to shout that British police should burn in hell.  Because you see, Britain has free speech. And further, in response to your question dear lady as to whether Koran-observant Moslems ought to respect the laws of the country that hosts them?

Well, the answer is, “No”.

Eventually, she encounters some scholar type who informs her Koranic-like chapter and verse that Moslems need not observe non-Moslem law in their host countries, and, that she is going to hell to boot.

She responds with, “It hurts me to think that you think that of me because you don’t really know me …” As if that would make a difference.

To which the scholar-type replies that he knows quite enough. He knows she is not a Moslem.

Well, she tried to be understanding and fair and considerate of everyone’s feelings. What else is there to say?

A little, apparently.

She sets the tone of the wrap-up of her video adventure with a voice-over wherein she announces she, “finds it sad that anyone would preach such a damning message”.

Then, tremulously facing the camera: “To sum up in words to tell you how I’m feeling now …  I feel … gutted, completely gutted that this is happening ….”

Words failing her she goes silent; and saying no more, turns her head away from camera and toward the protesters.

A pause …. to let the profundity of the feelings sink in ….

Feelings … hurt … feelings … are her frame of reference. Along with mutual sympathy and respect for all differences; emphasizing the notion of a tolerant and accepting  “fairness” among presumed “equals”.

But she is obviously not their equal. Not in physical fact clearly, and not according to the moral theory they announce.

And what does she have in her ideological armamentarium with which to respond to them?

Feelings. She has feelings. And she wants to tell you about her feelings and how hurtful you are being to them.

I guess she imagines the Moslems must care about her feelings. Or that they should care. It is almost as if she sees her feelings as some great scale by which moral principles ought to be weighed and evaluated.

But the Moslem marchers obviously don’t care. And I don’t see how they could care, given her pathetic intellectual performance. I certainly don’t care, and like her, I am a westerner myself.

Western culture, the postmodernist, modern liberal portion of it, is not only skeptical of religious dogmatism, it is skeptical (and increasingly outright nihilistic) regarding moral knowledge in general, and quite often about the possibility of solid or enduring knowledge concerning reality itself.

Positive, empirical science, the one practice that is still thought by some of this ideological stripe to yield what can be called certain knowledge, is held by these same persons to be value free, and incapable of yielding any “is” information, which leads to “ought” conclusions.

When it comes to moral questions then, all this kind of person can do when confronted by other some person having dogmatic and insistent views is, just as C.S. Lewis and others before him long ago observed,  to remark on the state of their feelings.

Of course “way back when”, when Lewis laid out the implications of such relativism and skepticism, and then described its inevitably hapless and pathetic end-point, his reductio ad absurdum depiction had a certain flavor of the comically ironic about it. Certainly, and whatever their 20th century progressive opinion leader rhetoric, no broad segment of any society would actually embrace skepticism and relativism to a point wherein they would wind up quite so stupid and hapless in the face of a strident and mocking challenge to their assumed “values”, as we saw here?

Well, with enough propagandizing social affirmation and encouragement, they obviously can.

What then, Lewis and others presented as a warning via their careful exercises in hypothetical logic, and the inevitable conclusions of their chains of reasoning, this young woman is now living out in fact.

She embraced the skeptical milquetoast meta-values presented to her. She internalized them. She then lived comfortably among similar enabling others who had no motivation to rock or test their relativist boat,  exposing its virtually non-existent freeboard, and lack of seaworthiness.

Now however, she confronts hostile and vehement others who, in an act of modern values sacrilege, sneer at her feelings and test her values with their life and death commitments.

And all she can do is announce to the world how THAT makes her feel; and theatrically shake her head with sadness as a means of trying to elevate herself  to her lost honor and dignity. After all, she’s “above that” other stuff.

Yes … I guess she is. Just as long as those vestiges of western moral ideals more potent than the relativism and skepticism and values emotivism which she represents and lives out, continue to hold the moral barbarians somewhat at bay.

 

[Update note. I've made some wording changes in the first 2/3rds "narrative portion" of the post. Changing word order, tightening up slightly, checking punctuation and coherence, and doing the things real bloggers do when they write a draft before posting.  The more analytical remarks about postmodern culture are unchanged.]

 

 

Posted in Culture, Islam, Law, Liberal, Philosophy, politically correct, politics, Religion, society, terrorists, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | 7 Comments »

Obama and a Presentment of Englishry?

Posted by DNW on 2014/05/28

This Incredible Slinking Men of the Obama Administration never cease to amaze.

Not just in their leftoid, parasitical on the productive class effrontery, but in their lack of logical acumen; their inability to recognize that in breaking legal bonds in one direction, they are broken in the other.

Or perhaps they don’t believe that there is a reciprocal dynamic between leftist conqueror and the American conquered.

As the Obamanaughts phrased it: “We rule now”.  The operative term here being rule, not govern or administer. And if the legislature, that is the American Congress, will not give the Little Imperator what he wants, why he will do it by Executive Order, he threatens.

So why should we be surprised by this report which states that the Obama Administration is proposing what is basically an ethnic based regime of law in Hawaii?

AOL didn't bury this report

AOL didn’t bury this report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just a few years ago no one would have believed that such a report could be credible. But now, with what we have already seen out of this administration, our natural skepticism is reduced.

Law is the embodiment of the moral sense of the people,  Blackstone is alleged to have said.

Now it is proposed we accept the notion within our polity of different laws for different moral moieties; which implies, though the advocates no doubt wish to ignore it, that we have fundamentally different peoples with irreconcilably different moral sensibilities, jostling in the same political space.

This doesn’t seem to line up with leftist moral rhetoric.

But, as we have seen in the past, leftists seem incapable of grasping simple deductive inferences, so caught up are they in their “world-creating” fantasy existence.

 

Yeah, I remember law just like that from my school days.

 

“Such of the crimes as might be prosecuted by an appeal, and for which the criminal’s lands were forfeited to his lord or to the King, and his chattels taken, or for which he lost life or member, or was outlawed, were called felonies. Misdemeanours, such as were subsequently known under a fully developed common law, were practically ignored by the justices of Henry the Third’s reign, and on the eyre rolls of that period may be said not to appear. Homicide and rape are the crimes that here pass before us. The former is the only one that need be considered. In some few cases homicide was held to be justifiable, and when such happened the slayer suffered no punishment.

Neither did he where death was caused by misadventure or in self defence.

Every other case of homicide, that is, that which was neither justifiable nor excusable, was felonious.

The difference between murder and manslaughter was then unknown.

In Glanvill’s day secret homicide, which is murdrum, had to be distinguished from homicidium, but the distinction soon died away.1 The term murdrum however survived as the name of the fine paid by the hundred when a person was slain and the slayer not produced.

The law presumed that everyone killed was a foreigner unless his English birth was proved. Possibly the origin of the doctrine is to be found in the statutes of William the Conqueror, which decreed that all men whom he brought with him or who had followed him should be in his peace.

And if one of them were slain the lord of his murderer was to seize the slayer.

But if he could not do so then the lord was to pay forty-six marks of silver as long as his possessions held out, and on their exhaustion the hundred in which the killing took place was to pay in common the balance owing.

The presentment of Englishry (Englescheria), that is proving the slain to be an Englishman by birth, was at first one of the few formal badges of distinction between the conquering and conquered race. Its practical need could not have lasted long, for at the end of the twelfth century it was impossible, except in the very highest or very lowest ranks, to distinguish Norman from Englishman.” [Pleas of the Crown for the Hundred of Swineshead and the Township of Bristol by Edward James Watson]

Looks like the Obama Administration does in fact believe itself quite capable of distinguishing Saxon from non-Saxon. At least when they see a political gain in it for themselves.

So much for any notion that the left believes or ever really believed in the first place, that mankind constituted one moral species … no matter how rhetorically useful they happen to have found the spouting of Christian and natural law doctrines in order to advance their cause – at least far enough along to subvert and displace the same.

 

 

 

Posted in Constitution Shredded, Culture, Hawai'i, history, Law, Liberal, Philosophy, politics, race, society, Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

Dishonest David Dewhurst Dumped

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/05/28

TEA Party alive and well in Texas

Two years ago, David Dewhurst and Ted Cruz were vying for US Senate. Dewhurt’s ads were all over Conservative talk radio. And the consensus was that what Dewhurst had to do was to keep on lying about Cruz in order to be elected, but all Cruz had to do was keep on telling the truth. And we all know how that election turned out.

Yes, I’m an unabashed Ted Cruz supporter. And it looks like so are most Texas Republican voters. In a Republican run-off for Texas Lieutenant Governor, Establishment Republican favorite David Dewhurst ran up against TEA Party favored Dan Patrick. And the seat Texans had re-elected Dewhurst to previously, that seat, the Lieutenant Governor’s chair, was overwhelmingly taken away from the sitting Republican Lieutenant Governor and handed over to the TEA Party. (You might want to remind me that it was only the Republican run-off, but if you do that, I’ll remind you it’s Texas, not some state where Democrats are competitive state-wide.)

How bad was the Establishment drubbing? How easily did the TEA Party candidate win? How about by a 30 POINT MARGIN?

Note to the McConnell/Boehner camp: The rumors of our demise are greatly exaggerated.

HT Twitchy

Posted in Character, Conservative, Elections, Philosophy, politics, TEA Party, truth | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

The Vast Majority Of America’s Poor … Aren’t

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2014/05/13

I want you to go to work 9 hours each day, 6 days each week, for 10 months. In this 10-month experience, you will pay no taxes, no rent, no utilities, no insurance; you will buy no food, no gasoline, no bus fare, no clothing, no toiletries, no nothing. You will instead save every penny you earned working those 43 54-hour weeks, at the end of which, you will take all the money -every last cent- to the electronics store and buy a middle of the road laptop computer with Linux installed (not Mac or Windows) and a decent printer. You will pay the cashier every penny you have, and leave none in reserve. After which, ladies, you will spend the next 9 9-hour workdays saving every last penny you earn so you can purchase a black one-piece swimsuit.

Because that’s what those three items cost a particular working woman in the Philippines. 9 hours a day for 198 Philippine Pesos. 22 PHP per hour. 50 US cents per hour. 54 hours a week. And she’s not running around looking for handouts. She’s looking to work to get ahead, by her own merits.

The vast majority of America’s “poor” just flat-out aren’t.

Posted in Character, Culture, economics, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, Real Life, society, truth | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

What Rush Limbaugh doesn’t quite get.

Posted by DNW on 2014/04/30

[This is a draft which I'll put up, subject to later revision and correction. Wanted to get something down before I forgot the point that struck me earlier today]

Contrary to what a great many lefties seem to find comfort in believing, most of us who have developed a strong intellectual contempt for leftism and its modern fascistic manifestation, did not develop this attitude from listening to Rush Limbaugh. Limbaugh merely gives voice – on occasion quite effectively – to some important principles and perspectives regarding the traditional American regime of individual liberty currently under sustained assault by the morally self-deconstructed organisms of the fascist left.

While I seldom have the time or the inclination to listen to his riffs on politics, occasionally I will catch a fragment of one of his programs. Today was such an occasion. I caught about five minutes or so of what he was saying.

And what he was saying today seemed to be to the effect that the left in this country was trying to divide rather than unite, and attempting to do so through the politics of victimization rather than the politics of inspiration.

That, if I have Limbaugh pegged correctly, is a relatively common theme with him.

The standard Limbaugh “argument” on this point seems to go something like this:

Why do the Democrats and modern liberals seek to divide us through the politics of victim-hood and class conflict, rather than unite behind American ideals and inspiration?

Because, (he seems to answer,) both the Democrat Party’s raison d’etre, and the liberal grievance mill’s funding, are based on the existence of a client class which must remain a dependent and aggrieved client class in order for the Democrat Party bureaucrats and managers to justify their own parasitic existences.

Today for example, I heard him say some part of the following, (which I later looked up on his web site in order to confirm that I had gotten right what he was trying to say).

Limbaugh says:

Practically every virtue and every tradition that went into building this country is under assault right now. And that’s what we find ourselves in the middle of. You can say it’s always been there, and it’s been effervescing and bubbling up and finally now it’s boiled over. But why has it boiled over it if it’s always been there? Why did nobody tamp it down? In order to keep the peace, why have efforts been made to victimize people and punish — well, no. Why has the Democrat Party willfully, eagerly, happily put people in groups, made them victims, put them on the welfare rolls, made their existence barely a subsistence? Why has there not been any effort to tamp down some of this animosity in the country and try to turn it into love?

Why has there not been an overall effort to inspire people to exercise the opportunity this country provides everybody today to be the best they can be? Where has that gone? Why is that missing? Why is now everybody a victim? Why is everybody owed something? Why is everybody a victim of the immoral, unjust founding of this country? It’s been a movement that’s been around since the beginning of the country. And rather than tamp it down, the Democrat Party has inspired it; the Democrat Party has promoted it.

It is the single source of their power: aggrieved, miserable, angry, unhappy people looking for the people they’re mad at to be gotten even with. Looking for the people they are mad at to be dealt with. Looking for the people that they’re mad at to be punished. And when it happens, they’re all happy, whether it improves their lives or not. And in most cases it doesn’t. But they don’t care because they’ve been conditioned to believe that somebody being punished, either taxes being raised or any other form of punishment, that’s justice. And the Democrat Party is the agent of that justice. The Democrat Party’s facilitating all this. That’s where its home is. None of this would be working if there were not a significant political power base propping it up as a foundation.

Now, there is probably a good deal of truth in that take.

But, in my estimation, there is an explanation for the modern liberal grievance attitude and behavior that goes somewhat deeper than the cynically and destructively manipulative calculus of professional left-wing collectivists seeking to ensure their bureaucratic hold on the future and present political control.

And it stems from the radically different worldviews, and the radically different metaphysics, which condition the conceptions of justice and victim-hood held by the two opposing sides.

Limbaugh asked,

“Why has the Democrat Party willfully, eagerly, happily put people in groups, made them victims … Why is everybody a victim of the immoral, unjust founding …”

And his answer was that “It is the single source of their [Democrat] power: aggrieved, miserable, angry, unhappy people looking for the people they’re mad at to be gotten even with.”

Like I said, so far as it goes, so good.

But what Limbaugh is overlooking in this particular instance, is the utter sincerity of some major part of the intellectual left concerning their views on the nature and origin of victim-hood.

And here we are obviously not just referring to victims of social bigotry or political fraud; but to something much deeper. What I believe Limbaugh is overlooking here is the core idea held by the progressive left which implies, or sometimes states outright, that people are in essence victims of life, or in fact of being, itself.

We’ve encountered the concept in various manifestations and formulations before. The so called “tyranny of biology”, denounced by radical feminists is for instance, an example, if a somewhat frivolous one, of that mindset. The psychological horror of “exclusion” felt by so many leftists is a symptom of the same phenomenon. The supposed “unfairness” of natural inequality, is another. Natural inequality is made all the worse in liberal opinion, because it cannot in principle be made better by bringing people up to standard through education or physical therapy; since, according to the liberal the presumed standard is itself intrinsically unjustifiable.

The world then, the leftist acknowledges, is not just. But he will make it “just”, he insists. And how will he do so? By bringing all persons up to par insofar as possible, and allowing all to then seek their own level and fulfillment under an impartial rule of law? No. He will make mankind’s world just, by remaking the universe of man, and “man” himself.

And how will he accomplish this trick? How will he affirm the unaffirmable, and hold together the incoherent? He will do it he assumes, through the magical social formula of embracing entropy politically while paying off the damages through fascistically enforced social solidarity and cost shifting. Which, considered in one way is something quite close to what Limbaugh is saying, given the proviso that the leftist actually believes he can in fact remake reality in this way through the verbal magic of declaring contradictions to be non-contradictory.

This absurd program of re-conceptualizing reality in the face of all evidence, must take place, because, again, in the liberal view, there is no “natural good” to advert to, and there are no natural kinds which in their healthy state objectively tend toward a naturally good end. An end of which it can objectively be said, should [value statement alert] be pursued by the individual; and regarding which, it is merely the duty of others in society to respect and to not unnecessarily impede.

In the liberal reality however, it makes no sense to talk of natural rights or their fulfillment. In the liberal reality there are only loci of pain and pleasure existing in a field of ultimate chaos; and within this context, the power relations between them.

For while the liberal, to paraphrase Nietzsche, may seem to normal people to be a kind of organism with its gain turned up way too high; there is according to liberal doctrine no such setting as “too high”. On the modern liberal understanding there simply exist no natural and objective standards by which one may assess where the normal pain threshold ends, and where liberal neurosis and neurasthenia begin.

As there are, as a matter of liberal dogma and doctrine, no natural kinds with natural ends, there are therefore no natural goods which can be said to follow from these natural kinds and their ends. For a modern liberal, all being, to restate, is merely the subjective experience of a locus of appetite, of power and satisfaction, or of their lack.

In traditional Scholastic metaphysics the analysis of human existence and of the good reaches a point where it is concluded that the terms “being” and “good” are to be taken and understood as “convertible” on some conceptual level

But no modern or postmodern philosopher or ardent liberal would assert that being alive is somehow a good in itself. The postmodern man, posits himself as the inevitable victim of being, and concomitantly, of life. He is a victim of life by virtue of simply being alive. Those sometimes seen more life-competent or stronger appearing persons, are simply the beneficiaries of a natural injustice which must be socially rectified by the liberal in the name of distributed suffering; i.e. liberal justice.

And of this “rectification” process there can be no end, since:

1. There exist as we noted, no natural standards which would result from the existence of natural kinds.

2. Therefore there cannot be any objective method of evaluating the satisfaction of standards.

3. There is therefore no objective way of evaluating a susceptibility to pain and resentment which could indicate a pathological condition. Since, the very term pathology assumes a teleology of health based on a presumed natural kind with a natural end. Liberal neurosis flows from a well, the bottom of which can in principle never be reached.

The strange result of this categorical anarchy then, is that the modern liberal is in essence always at war with existence itself: his only certain mode of being, being the experience of the pain and the frustration of urges which themselves cannot on, nor by virtue of, the liberal’s own terms and definitions, be presumed to be directed toward any objective good in their realization.

As an effect, the modern liberal loses any coherence as a being in-himself. All that remains ontologically (loosely speaking) of the liberal being, is a collection of urges connected to a will to power. This constitutes, according to the modern liberal’s own schema, a will to power by a thing or a phenomenon which has, amazingly, no center, no nature, and no objectively definable good.

This lack of real being, is at the root, I would argue, of the modern-liberal victim sensibility. They are victims of their own existences by definition; and cannot be anything else in their flight from an oppressive natural existence, ultimately, than totalitarians dedicated to reshaping all of reality. In fact we see this explicitly stated by the so-called transhumanist utilitarians, who will ultimately they admit, be driven by their philosophy to dominate and control and reorder all of nature, in order to ensure justice and bliss even among the fishes.

Are they, these postmodern leftists then, as Limbaugh suggests, rank cynics: nihilistically seeking satisfactions for welling urges which on their (assuming we can say that they have a “they”) own account cannot be seriously called objectively good?

Yes. But that is I think, a symptom of a more fundamental emptiness, and the result of the original and very deliberate descent of the modern-liberal man from the realm of man, into the realm of the submoral.

Posted in Liberal, Philosophy, society | 5 Comments »

 
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