March 17, 2012

Well, now

If even center rightists are saying we’ve lost the debate on birth control, it must be so. Time to tuck our tails between our legs and fold up our nativity scenes, Jesushumpers. Our party has more pressing issues to address. Like the economy. And tax breaks. Not all this distracting godbothery nonsense (that may or may not speak to the very core individual and religious liberty concerns this country was founded to protect).

Oh. And tell your stupid statistics to shut up.

They’re being unhelpful again.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 10:38am
67 comments | Trackback

Comments (67)

  1. Hold on a second, some guy on the internet posts a declarative statement, without anything to back it up, then you show him the stats that refute his statement, and people continue to declare the original statement to be true?

    There might be a word for such a thing… can’t quite figure out what it is.

  2. Well, it turns out the Jesusy liars have cooked the data, if I dig deep enough into the numbers. Whereas the other polls cited by the center-rightists? Pristine and accurate to a fault.

    Face it, godhumpers. You lost. Let can we stop it with all this “Constitution” talk and get back to the real issues, like getting Mitt Romney elected so we can have a Wall Street crony who isn’t quite so ideologically driven as the current President?

  3. Obama is running around pandering to friendly crowds by making fun of his critics. He’s calling them flat earthers. He’s sending Biden out to say that republican economic ideas are bankrupt. Both are acting a bit like stand up comedians doing a set.

    The problem is people are really hurting, and they know who is president and they have no reason to buy into a reality where republican economics are bankrupt, yet democratic economics are in effect and failing to yield any benefits for normal (as opposed to connected people) people and actually making things worse for a lot of them

    Regular people know that Solyndra is bankrupt despite being portrayed as good future jobs that won’t go overseas by Biden just before they received a huge subsidy, went over seas, and then failed.

    The Volt is not selling. They’ve stopped building them due to a huge inventory and no dealers to order them.

    High Speed Rail sounds like something only an idiot would propose in the present market.

    Unemployment is still very high. Regulations that make hiring people expensive have not been lifted. Hiring incentives do little because they barely even begin to pay for the cost of hiring.

    Oil prices are going up. Drilling on federal land is down. Drilling to increase the oil supply and thus influence the futures market is mocked.

    New taxes saved until “after the election” are about to hit to fund programs that have already been shown to cost at least twice as much as “projected”.

    Our Debt is going up. Obama tries to blame that on Republicans still even though he’s driven the debt way up and set it to rise for a long time.

    Regular people know that a lot of the housing crash came from compliance with leftist “everybody in a home” loan subsidy and coercive action policies that were wrongly tolerated by Republicans for too long and badly underfunded when it came time to pay the piper. They know that money is being printed to buy and repackage those debts which may well be worthless ultimately.

    Democrats are now talking about a debt forgiveness program that cannot possibly be funded without borrowing or further diluting the dollar supply.

    The people Obama is mocking and cajoling KNOW who’s policies are in effect and what the results are.

    Thus the president is sadly put in the position of running against himself more than he is republicans. He is reminding people of their pain and then trying to get a laugh out of it indicating that he does not care about the pain and wants to use it to cast soil on his opponents rather than take responsibility for it.

    He is trying to get people unaligned to him to forget what they already know and trust him after he has hurt them and laughed at him.

    No wonder his approval numbers are dropping.

  4. If we stop with all the silly Constitution talk, does that mean we get to go back to talking about monarchy, whether absolute or mitigated by a Parliament — oh, wait, even those stupid Parliamentarians think they’ve got a Constitution, though it may not happen to be written down all in one place? So maybe then we’ll just talk about absolute monarchy and the vast relief we’ll all have no longer being required to be attentive to absurdities like “self-rule”. And hey! March Madness is afoot right along with universal drink-until-you-puke day.

  5. Gallup today:

    Obama Approval43%-1
    Obama Disapproval50%

    Now he’ll probably never fall further than 38% or so and I guess that’s probably his unshakable base who’d still like him if he exiled them to antarctica to count penguins.

  6. The Volt is not selling.

    It sure as hell isn’t keeping them from advertising non-stop during the basketball tournament. This, in spite of the fact that their target audience is overwhelmingly enjoying coffee enemas after yoga or making their own faux Native American jewelry while the games are going on. Clearly someone told the Chevy hacks that it would please Baracky if they fed his delusion that he’s a normal guy by airing this garbage during sporting events.

  7. Why monarchy? Why not go back to tribes, strange alliances, retributions, and short lived strong-leaders with a good idea ? We could march with our cattle and take no land, only loot.

  8. I guess it’s a good thing the argument’s not about birth control then

    since we’re losing that one.

  9. Good lord … what a bunch of nascent fascists over there! I pointed out the 1st amendment is Freedom of Religion not freedom of worship (in response to the usual crap about Catholic hospitals being businesses not religious institutions) and …

    @Darleen Click:

    “So you’re the one to decide the parameters of what the Christian call to serve entails?”

    Yes, that’s absolutely right. We DO get to decide things in our society that affect other people. We don’t live in an anarchistic state, in which anyone gets to determine that they will or will not follow laws based on whatever religion they happen to have.

    “Last I looked the First Amendment spoke of Freedom of Religion, not freedom of worship.”

    So, you would be supportive of an argument that the devout Muslim man should be only subject to Sharia laws? After all, that’s exactly what their religion says should be the case.

    Somehow I doubt it.

    Irregardless, polling shows that your view is a rump one and the debate has been soundly lost by your side. There’s no more avenue for political movement on this before the election and there’s every indication that after the election there won’t be either. The issue will eventually go to the courts, and if the SC decides the rule is unconstitutional, fine. But until then, it’s the law of the land and you’d be better off getting used to it.

  10. The center-rightists tend to attract the facists until the site moves more and more left. I think we’re witnessing yet another instance.

  11. By the way, has anyone pointed out to Mr “We DO get to decide things in our society that affect other people” that part of the “we” he references is the “we” he’s now saying has no say? — which is precisely why “we” allow everyone his individual autonomy, provided they meet the conditions of certain rights we’ve identified and codified as unalienable?

    Or would his head explode were it forced to fit such a proposition into its little spaces?

  12. Also, “irregardless”?

    Yeah. That right there is what we call an identity marker.

  13. I notice now the new “tactic” — besides denying that Catholic hospitals are really Catholic — is that the employee EARNS her insurance so screw the employer

    Employment based health care insurance is earned, repeat earned, by an employee’s work. It’s not a Christmas present.

    What is so hard for these authoritarians to understand? I reply

    And if you don’t like the package offered don’t take the job.

    It is profoundly dishonest to take a job then lobby the government to force your employer to provide you something that they didn’t when you accepted the job.

  14. We don’t live in an anarchistic state,

    It is always the case in these arguments that the left sees any restriction on what government can do to the individual as equal to anarchy. Very binary logic people. We may have either their preference of totalitarianism or anarchy. No other models exist.

  15. geoffb

    and it’s the elevation of “the law” to its own religious status that is another tell of the nascent totalitarian. It’s not enough for people to “rule” themselves through morality, if its not in The Law, then ANARCHY!! (and oh, if it IS the law, no matter how stupid, venal or unconstitutional – Get Used To It)

    What also irks is that this whole thing was a rule issued from HHS – not a law passed by Congress in the first place.

    When do we insist on getting SCOTUS to start spanking Congress for the unconstitutionality of delegating their legislative powers to unelected bureaucracies?

  16. You know, it’s funny, but I already saw most of Mataconis and his commenters’ arguments held up to me as gospel by that champeen of libertarianism and fiscal conservatism over at Daily Pundit.

    I’m tempted to apply that Robert Heinlein quote:

    A ‘pacifist malelibertarian’ is a contradiction in terms. Most self-described ‘pacifistslibertarians’ are not pacific in favor of liberty; they simply assume false colors. When the wind changes, they hoist the Jolly Roger.

    And are just horrified at the prospect of actual liberty.

  17. I won’t say Mataconis singlehandedly put me off OTB — he had a lot of help from Joyner himself and one or two others — but he is the flakiest guy over there.

  18. Darleen, unfortunately, too many people (I was one of them) accept(ed) the premise that regulatory agencies have the power to write regulations which then have the force of law. The EPA is probably the most egregious example.

    Until more people start challenging the false premises upon which the current “legal” framework is built, we’re going to have problems.

    A recent example of the federal judiciary interfering in what was properly a matter for for the State is the recent ruling on gay marriage for our very own CA.

    The federal court had no right to be ruling on gay marriage. However, once the premise was established, things predictably went downhill from there.

  19. Mataconis lying = dog bites man.

  20. Addendum: Dr. Helen Smith and the burning man , Thomas Ball.

    Government officials have the power to make your life miserable, even if you’re completely in the right.

  21. Doug Matconis goes to great lengths to convince himself of what he just knows to be true and the commenters there lap it up. As I have said many times before, I can only assume the Outside the Beltway is supposed to be ironic, though it wasn’t until about 2008. Dr. Joyner and friends are at best domesticated conservatives like David Brooks. Their contempt for most of the right is out in the open.

  22. I don’t even argue with them anymore. It’s like chasing a dog chasing it’s tail. Whenever they start losing they’ll throw in a non sequitor and yell “Look! Shiny!” I’ll pass.

  23. Also, the argument is settled. We won/you lost, so shut up about it because can’t you people see how we won and you lost and if you don’t shut up about it, you’ll…

    It’s for your own good that you stop arguing with us!!!!! Because we won.

  24. Yes. It’s the old “Shut up!” she explained.

  25. This post had a formatting error all day, hiding a majority of what it said, and no one said anything? How did you all figure out what I was even writing about?

  26. i think one of the original links pointed to otb

  27. Jeff G., if I may quote an incredibly wise and astute blogger:

    Frankly, though, they didn’t need me to do that. The readers here are some of the smartest folks you’ll find in the blogosphere. And you haven’t managed to engage them in any way they haven’t already heard a millions time before, and answered a million times before.

  28. I see another installment in the PW conceptual series forthcoming.

  29. I thought it was a “shut up” They said Haiku.

  30. It is the blog-fu, Jeff. You have trained us well, Master.

  31. I stumbled on it when I clicked your first link, and then the comments link.

    Incidentally, did you all know “God” and “creator” do not appear in the Declaration of Independence?

    Also, our inalienable rights described in the DOI could not have come from anything but man and man’s government, because the constitution was written by man! Q. E. D. Suckers.

    It’s true, I learned all that in the comments over there today.

  32. I stumbled on it when I clicked your first link, and then the comments link.

    Incidentally, did you all know “God” and “creator” do not appear in the Declaration of Independence?

    Also, our inalienable rights described in the DOI could not have come from anything but man and man’s government, because the constitution was written by man! Q. E. D. Suckers.

    Just goes to show you how many of our presumed smarmy betters haven’t even read the thing. Here, I’ll even bold for them (by the way, did anyone over there ever correct them on any of this stuff?):

    When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

    Whether you believe in God or not, the idea is that unalienable rights are granted by an authority inherent in man and greater than himself. That’s the central conceit of our country and its founding.

    Because of this, government is designed for the purpose of securing these unalienable rights — and when government ceases to secure these rights, it becomes ripe for tearing down and beginning anew.

  33. Bravo, Jeff.

  34. I told’em look it up them self, I’m not a secretary, which apparently is proof the words don’t exist.

    Later, I was going to include them in another comment, but my laptop battery suddenly died just as I was going to post it. I hate that.

  35. No, we’ve lost when Doug Mataconis is considered center-right.

  36. Also, since I couldn’t bring myself to wade through the low-grade fever swamps that OTB has become (I reserve the hemorrhagic fever for dumps like Batshit Crazy Juice) , I have to ask if someone there actually said this:

    Incidentally, did you all know “God” and “creator” do not appear in the Declaration of Independence?

    Because, if so, whoever typed it should return his copy of the DOI that he got from the box of Lucky Charms. Apparently cereal manufacturers have been cutting costs.

  37. “I have to ask if someone there actually said this:

    Incidentally, did you all know “God” and “creator” do not appear in the Declaration of Independence?”

    LBascom says:
    Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 14:15

    Dennis, what if there is no God, no creator? The Declaration of Independence has it all wrong, and there are no unalienable rights?

    Well, gee, I guess you do what the strongest man in the region tells you to do. Your rights come from man, and from man they can be removed.

    Careful what you wish for

    Which solicited this response:

    anjin-san says:
    Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 14:27

    ” Dennis, what if there is no God, no creator? The Declaration of Independence has it all wrong”

    Please show me the word “God” in the Declaration of Independence (or the Constitution).

    I am a Buddhist. Please let the words of the founding fathers stand on their own, and stop trying to shove your interpretation of them down my throat. Its a bit of an infringement on my religious freedom.

    The founding fathers were bright guys. They worded things the way they did for a reason.

    I told him”Look it up yourself, I’m not your secretary”, but Pablo said:

    Pablo says:
    Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 22:42

    @anjin-san:

    So, you’ve never read the Declaration of Independence? And you’re making proclamations about it?

    I think it’s time you introduced yourself to that document. http://tinyurl.com/eabme

    You’ll find that both “God” and a “Creator” are both mentioned, the latter in one of the most often quoted sentences in American history.

    Contrary to popular belief, ignorance is really not bliss.

    The final word on the matter, as far as I know:

    anjin-san says:
    Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 23:41

    @ Pablo

    Yes, I was thinking of the absence of the word God in Constitution, (the document that actually has the force of law). It’s been a while since high school civics.

    I did mention “Creator” at some length [he's lying], so I am not sure what you are referring to there, and I think I already expressed my view that “Creator” does not necessarily equate to “God” [more lying] At any rate, the line “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God”, written by a deist, is something that does not jump out at me as an endorsement of Christianity [no one said Christianity, I said God and Creator]. And I note your editing of Jefferson’s words. [I don't know...]

    I’m going to go ahead and assert this: anjin-san considers himself an above average educated intellect. I consider anjin-san someone that believes great intellect is achieved by confusing even itself.

  38. This one cracked me up:

    dennis says:
    Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 15:32

    @LBascom:

    “I’m just pointing out that your inalienable rights don’t come from man or mans government.”

    Considering the fact that the document you are quoting is man-written, how do you know this?

  39. Anjin-san? A Sho-gun fan, eh? That was the name the Japanese gave Blackthorn in the books since they had a hard time pronouncing his name.

    He calls himself a Buddhist, huh? Which kind?

  40. Lee —

    This is the thinking that informs postmodernist epistemology: everything is expressed in language, even truths, therefore truth is man made and so is contingent. Blah blah blah.

    The thing is, we have an explicit social compact that describes as the terms of its acceptance a posited, for purposes of the document, truism that is binding: that certain rights come from a higher power and cannot therefore be taken from you by government.

    Whether or not there is such a higher power is irrelevant. The important thing is, we accept the terms of the contract, which posits that there is.

  41. I would ask those folks whether or not the normal set of natural rights (life, liberty, property) were inalienable or not?

    What we are agreeing to agree to by using “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” is that natural rights are not legal or civil rights that can be granted and revoked on the whims of a king or a legislature. No, they are inalienable, they can not be separated from the person by any man or groups of men.

  42. “Whether or not there is such a higher power is irrelevant. The important thing is, we accept the terms of the contract, which posits that there is.”

    Yes and no. If you posit something that requires a higher power, you best have a position to stand on. To us, that would be the DOI and the ideological policy that informed our constitution.

    If you hope to make the details of the contract applicable to public interaction, the higher power’s influence (as defined by Christianity)must be the baseline. Otherwise, it’s all about who can muster the most guns.

  43. Yes and no. If you posit something that requires a higher power, you best have a position to stand on. To us, that would be the DOI and the ideological policy that informed our constitution.

    You misunderstand. It’s a conceptual arrangement. Which is why you can be an atheist and still believe you have unalienable rights, because you agree to believe in rights that precede man’s authority. Maybe they come from nature. Or maybe they’re just a conceit of man’s, like a rule for a game. Doesn’t matter what you call them or if you necessarily believe in them. Just so long as you agree to defend them and follow them.

  44. Someone stirred up a similar argument this afternoon at Ricochet Lee. I dunno where it will go, but you can see where it came from.

  45. In case anyone’s wondering, deist in the context of the Enlightenment means the Judeo-Christian God is real, but Moses, and later Jesus, Peter and Paul, were makin’ shit up.

  46. Jesus, too? I thought they only thought took issue with the writers. So, Moses and some of the disciples was my understanding. (Not firmly contradicting you, I’m really not sure and would appreciate being set straight if I have this wrong.)

  47. “everything is expressed in language, even truths, therefore truth is man made and so is contingent.”

    well then is it really desirable to continue debating these folks? i don’t see the point of arguing with “idiots” anymore. i’m more breitbart in exposing stupidity and converting the “ignorant(ie everyday folks not tuned into this ideological struggle)” masses.

  48. “but Moses, and later Jesus, Peter and Paul, were makin’ shit up.”

    yea them parables were making shit up.

  49. My understanding is deists deny Jesus is the son of God, who, being a disinterested master clockmaker, wouldn’t deign to intervene in our pathetic affairs.

  50. Okay, we’re on the same page then and I was just thinking about it differently. My train of thought was moving along the tracks of them thinking Jesus was cool and all but the divine aspects were added by the writers. Hence, they don’t have a problem with Jesus (liked him* as a philosopher and moralist even) because they wouldn’t see him being the one making those claims or chronicling any miraculous activities.

    *Uncapitalized pronouns by the usage that Di taught me.

  51. yeah, well Darleen’s usage is a little weird. [wink and a grin]

  52. As I understand it, pure Desim is for people who want to live a theistic materialist cosmos with an impersonal non-anthropomorphic god who sets the order of things that reason helps us to comply with. The deistic god blissfully shits out physics and natural law but does not speak to nor evaluate his creation nor war with it nor perhaps even perceive it. This god is neither angry nor pleased by his creation. If it is self aware then it has no bearing on its relationship to the creation. It knows no resentment or jealousy or rancor. It does not protect or provide. It defines things and makes them immanent. Such a god is an example of a “good mechanism” that does what it does without thinking preferring or reacting and keeps all the space-shit running right. It is not the random meaningless mechanism of Democritus but more akin to Aristotle’s idea of a meaning to all substance and a relationship to nature that best fulfills the creation if it is observed when making personal decisions . The deist god is unimportant. Rather the design that he imposed in creation is. To obey the god is to lessen man’s burden in the cosmos and to work with rather than against the order that the god has imposed upon matter and energy. To disobey that order is to try to ice skate up hill and get skinned knees. The deist god made the universe and did so with a design that is the source of morality. Morality is a like a map of the behavior that will best integrate the human in the universe overt he long term. Immorality places humanity in danger like jumping from roof top to roof top. The deist god will not punish immorality but the universe will rove a more hostile place to the immoral. By knowing the nature of man and the nature of other elements of the rest of creation one can compose a proper set of behaviors that improves human life.

    Now the problem is that deists can assume that the universe punishes tyranny hardest or that that it punishes liberty hardest or that it is of consequence which one mankind chooses as both have good and bad forms for humans to follow.

    Various and different readings the design inherent in the universe is where deists generally diverge politically.

  53. That’s pretty much how I understand it too.

    It was hard to be a sophisticated (i.e. not the villiage idiot) atheist prior to Darwin. Although Aggasiz helped.

  54. The whole deism thing seems like an epiphenomenon. Or, something else was going on, nearer to the center.

  55. I’ve enjoyed your comments, palaeomerus, so please understand that I’m using this as a jumping off point rather than as some sort of slam or flame.

    [P]ure Desim is for people who want to live a theistic materialist cosmos with an impersonal non-anthropomorphic god [...]

    My bold. Sometimes when it comes to various versions of strange believers or the broad set of non-believer this is the way it’s expressed. That one chooses their perceptions and conjectures as to what’s going on because that’s what they want.

    Couple thoughts. My view of things is pretty much the exact opposite of what I want. I’m not a fan of what I think. Second thought, imagine turning that characterization around. Do the various flavors of believers want to believe this or that thing and then do so to fill that desire? I’d say not. I’d say they’re using their senses, hearts and minds. They’re not simply filled with an emotional whole to fill with a philosophy. They’re sensing, feeling, thinking.

    So, with the deists, they don’t necessarily want or desire the universe that they then described. They might just use their faculties and come to that as a conclusion or most likely conclusion.

  56. hole=whole, that’s a new typo for me.

  57. Any guesses where the w came from? That was the universe rising up to bite you. heh

  58. Never noticed that before. Whole, hole. Two ends of the spectrum. Simple typo.

    That’s weird.

  59. ” They’re not simply filled with an emotional whole to fill with a philosophy. They’re sensing, feeling, thinking.”

    An effort to fill emotional holes is precisely what drives most people to do thinking, sensing and feeling in the modern era. Before that it was hunger and safety for most. And it doesn’t always lead to philosophy either. Some people fill it with activity, distractions, or they just medicate themselves.

  60. “You misunderstand. It’s a conceptual arrangement. Which is why you can be an atheist and still believe you have unalienable rights, because you agree to believe in rights that precede man’s authority. Maybe they come from nature. Or maybe they’re just a conceit of man’s, like a rule for a game. Doesn’t matter what you call them or if you necessarily believe in them. Just so long as you agree to defend them and follow them.”

    I get that, but if it is believed to be just a conceit of man’s, like a rule for a game, it seems to me it is much easier to rationalize changing the rules, IE, accepting and justifying the concept of a “living constitution”.

    I think that’s why John Adams said “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

  61. I get that, but if it is believed to be just a conceit of man’s, like a rule for a game, it seems to me it is much easier to rationalize changing the rules, IE, accepting and justifying the concept of a “living constitution”.

    I think that’s why John Adams said “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    You can be moral and not be religious. Or if you prefer, have a strong ethical base. Changing the rules midstream is not terribly ethical, though I’ll certainly allow that for the religious, the authority they conceive prior to theirs is more daunting.

    Still, though, for me — and I’m agnostic — the idea that we are born with rights than other men, cowardly grouping together to form mobs in order to control me, can’t take a way as a condition of my birth, strongly appeals to me.

    Whether or not I believe that’s because nature creates us all that way, or that authority comes from God, or that’s just a really good idea, philosophically speaking and drawing on the nature of man, doesn’t so much matter. What matters is that I believe, or at least agree to accept the conditions.

  62. Trouble is Lee, at least it seems like a reasonable objection, if we’re to assert that the origin of the principles of the US founding derives from revealed religion, as from the voice of God himself, then we’re dependent on precisely that revelation (because, we say, only God can deliver it).

    But, as regards the founding and framing, we’re in want. There is no revelation to be seen. Whereas, on the other hand, we have the testimony of Jefferson to another effect. He points to prior thinkers who instilled an argument about politics which Jefferson took to be a commonplace among America advocates (when writing the Declaration, that is).

  63. Still, though, for me — and I’m agnostic — the idea that we are born with rights than other men, cowardly grouping together to form mobs in order to control me, can’t take a way as a condition of my birth, strongly appeals to me.
    Whether or not I believe that’s because nature creates us all that way, or that authority comes from God, or that’s just a really good idea, philosophically speaking and drawing on the nature of man, doesn’t so much matter. What matters is that I believe, or at least agree to accept the conditions.

    As I understand it, that was the premise behind Strauss’s argument that even if you didn’t believe in the useful myth, it was still useful, and thus it behooved you to pretend to believe in it.

  64. . . . the premise behind Strauss’s argument that even if you didn’t believe in the useful myth, it was still useful, and thus it behooved you to pretend to believe in it.

    It’s hard to say what Strauss thought precisely, at least as regards his own view of himself and his position relative to politics at work (it’s very hard to find him talking about that, ever). What that premise sounds like to me though Ernst, is a sketch of Strauss’ description of Plato’s position or Plato’s description of the conditions of politics as such, taken broadly, though even there Plato likely thinks something else as regards the philosopher, who stands apart from political activity.

  65. I’m not really asserting the origin of the principles of the US founding derives from revealed religion, as from the voice of God himself, just that the concept of inalienable rights requires an acceptance of a higher authority. I don’t have a problem with Jeffs position.

    The problem I see, and it’s becoming a bigger problem every day, is if everyone comes to believe the concept is nothing more than a useful myth of mans construction, then we live under hazard of a super genius like Obama convincing the people he has a better construction we can and should transform ourselves into.

  66. “. . . if everyone comes to believe the concept is nothing more than a useful myth of mans construction, then we live under hazard of a super genius like Obama convincing the people he has a better construction we can and should transform ourselves into.”

    Yeah, heck, that looks like water over the dam and far away downstream already to me. It isn’t a myth-like thing though, in any case, so far as I can see, but a moderately long political argument, at one time a commonplace simply because taught and internalized, thereupon abandoned as formerly taught and replaced with a newer and shinier argument having little to nothing to do with the original argument save as it (the new one) sets out to overthrow the former, trampling it underfoot where necessary as it proceeded.

  67. if everyone comes to believe the concept is nothing more than a useful myth of mans construction, then we live under hazard of a super genius like Obama convincing the people he has a better construction we can and should transform ourselves into.

    Nietzsche nutshelled!

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