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Thursday, September 30, 2010

The USA has a secular government. Not!

It's commonly said and believed that "the USA has a secular government." As, for instance, here
Islam, therefore, is profoundly at odds with the values of the West. For we in the West, whether liberals or conservatives, accept church(mosque)-state separation. We no doubt argue heatedly over what exactly it entails, but we are agreed on the main principle. I regularly criticize the shysters of the ACLU for their extremist positions on this question; but I agree with them that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion . . . ."

This raises a very serious question. Is Islam -- pure, unEnlightened, un-watered-down, fundamentalist, theocratic Islam -- deserving of First Amendment protection? We read in the First Amendment that Congress shall not prohibit the free exercise of religion. Should that be understood to mean that the Federal government shall not prohibit the establishment and free exercise of a totalitarian, fundamentalist theocratic religion in a particular state, say Michigan?

The USA is a Christian nation with a secular government. Suppose there was a religion whose aim was to subvert our secular government. Does commitment to freedom of religion enjoin toleration of such a religion?
Strictly speaking this [the statement in blue] isn't true: France has a secular government; the USA has a non-sectarian government.

The difference is very important:
* a secular government will tend to frown upon (and seek to control) religious belief and expression;
* a non-sectarian government will tend to favor religious belief and expression ... without taking sides or seeking to control the people's religious expression.

Moreover, the rationale of the government of the USA, that is to say, the Constitution of the United States, presupposes Christianity. So, the non-sectarianism of the US government, is, properly speaking, non-sectarian with respect to sects of Christianity. Other religions (including atheism) are tolerated to the extent that they are "well-behaved" ... as Mormonism was not 150 years ago, and as Islam can never be and still be Islam.

The false idea that "the USA has a secular government" was invented and is primarily pushed by atheists/secularists who *want* America to have a secular government ... the easier to use the stick of government to beat on Christianity.

And (to satisfy any stickler for detail), and as far as "The USA is a Christian nation" ... at one time, no doubt. These days, it's more accurate to say that America is a "Christian-ish" nation.

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'COEXIST' ... again.

An absolutely righteous take-down of those obnoxious 'COEXIST' bumperstickers that certain self-righteous poseurs like to put on their Priuses.

Tom McMahon: [One Of] The Ten Most Obnoxious Bumper Stickers You Will See In Madison

edit (2010/12/14):
Here is an amusing twist on 'Coexist'

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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Truth and Honesty ... and Otherwise

What is a lie? Is it really always a lie to knowingly speak untruth? I mean, really?

My thesis in this little essay is that most of us have a childish (and not in a good sense) understanding of what a lie is, and what it means to lie. And, it surely doesn't help that, at least in English, we don't have a positive word meaning something like "to intentionally deceive another in accord with the dictates of morality."

To look at the question of language in another way, if 'to lie' really does mean something like "to intentionally deceive another in discord with the dictates of morality," then it seems to me that it cannot be the case that the person who "lies" to the Nazis about the Jews he has hidden in the cellar has actually lied. And yet, we are forced to use the same word for deceiving others when we should not, and when we should ... leading to confusion for all, and distress, often intense, for the unsophisticated or literal-minded.

I've tried to discuss this before, on someone else's blog ... and caused distress to the, hmmm, unsophisticated or literal-minded. But, as this is my blog, perhaps here I may be better able to ease the distress of anyone who may be distressed on reading these thoughts.

Recently, as a comment to me in the "Random Thoughts on 'Game'" thread, Athol Kay said:
Game is in essence "applied female psychology". There is unquestionably a dark side to it, but also a light side as well. ...
I mention this here because part of my response, should I ever get around to composing and posting it, would have been a small disquisition about the co-mingling of "dark sides" and "light sides." Something like:
I don't believe that "Game" *is* in essence "applied female psychology". But, let us suppose, at least, that it contains that. From my perspective, as a man who values truth and reason above all things, the "unquestionable dark side" of "Game" weighs heavier that this (supposed) "light side." That is, even with this (supposed) "light side," "Game" is a deception and wicked.

Now, the best lies (from the point of view of the liar) always contain truth; the more truth, the better the lie. And, the epitome of the art of lying would be to speak only what is true, and yet deceive one's marks.
I trust Gentle Reader can see that this is here because it is about the current topic.

For example, concerning what I say is the "epitome of the art of lying," that is what Bill Clinton aims for, or used to aim for; but he's just not nearly half so good as he imagines he is. The main reason Clinton was considered such a "good" liar when he was president is because half the country *wanted* to be lied to. We all saw, did we not, that the bloom was off *that* particular rose during the election of 2008? Clinton was no longer a "good" liar, not because of any change in the quality (nor likely quantity) of his lies, but because no one any longer wanted to believe *his* lies ... for, after all, there was a new kid in town.

Now, as I've already intimated, and as is part of the thesis here, I don't believe that it's merely the deception of a lie which makes it a lie. And, if it is true that the epitome of the art of lying would be to speak only what is true, and yet deceive one's marks, then it cannot be merely the untruth of a lie which makes it a lie. At the same time, Gentle Reader can take comfort, at least, that I do not seek to upset the understanding that lying requires intention; that is, to speak untruth that one honestly believes to be truth is not to lie.

So, if it's not necessarily the intentional falsity of a statement which makes it a lie, and if a literally true statement may in fact be a lie, and if it's not necessarily the intentional deception of a statement which makes it a lie, what is it that makes a lie a lie? The defining characteristic of lying, as the term is commonly understood, is the intention to deceive when one has the moral duty not to deceive -- that is why and how a true statement may be a lie and a false statement, knowingly made, may be a not-lie.

'The Anchoress,' in recently defending Christine O'Donnell (who is mentioned here only in passing), relates a story about Corrie ten Boom:
A decade ago, O’Donnell asserted that she would not lie to a Nazi about hiding Anne Frank in her attic. These rhetorical scenarios are amusing “gotchas” in casual discussion-panel debates, but O’Donnell’s soundbite has been found objectionable by some, precisely because it is a soundbite; as such, it encourages reactions rather than reasoned musings. First Things’ own Joe Carter writes: “As a virtue ethicist I believe it would be immoral to not lie in that situation . . . If your [sic] hiding some of the Chosen People from enemies who want to kill them, it’s your duty to lie to protect them.”

No less then the Jew-hiding heroine Corrie ten Boom might disagree. In her book The Hiding Place, ten Boom recounts an episode where Nazis sought her nephew, Peter, who had been hidden in a root cellar, a rug and table hastily placed over the trapdoor. When soldiers demanded to know Peter’s whereabouts, his young cousin Cocky replied, “Why, he is under the table.”

The soldiers peered under the table while the family suppressed nervous chuckles. Humiliated, the Nazis threatened the family, then left. As others chastised Cocky for putting Peter-and the whole family-at such risk, her mother defended her, saying, “God honors truth-telling with perfect protection!”

Simplistic, right? Some might say “fundamentalist” and “anti-intellectual” to boot. But the story bolsters O’Donnell’s position; it suggests that power resides in a complete abandonment and surrender to the will of God and his laws, a faithful reliance that says, “If God is truth, he will be found only within truth, and not in a lie.”

This is the sort of heart-over-head theology that invites mockery, even as it zeroes in on Christ’s urging toward “childlike faith.” Jesus enjoyed the sophisticated reasoning of Nicodemus, but he rewarded the Centurion whose servant was sick, and who approached him wholly on faith. Intellectual debate did not lessen his appreciation of simple trust. ...
First off, I'll freely admit (after all, it's not as though God doesn't already know) that I don't have the faith -- I don't have the depth of trust in God -- to do as young Cocky did and stop trying to control what I cannot control.

But, regardless of my so-small trust and willingness to fully cast myself upon God, as I don't believe that the dictates of morality require one to not attempt to deceive the Nazis, I don't believe that, were I in such a situation, the intentionally deceptive answer I'd likely have given would be a lie (that is, as 'lie' is commonly understood).

And, understand this, young Cocky did actually deceive -- and he intended to deceive -- the Nazi soldiers (and, of course, I fully believe that God aided in that deception; and, for that matter, that God put the words in his heart which he uttered). What he managed to pull off is the not-lie version of what I said above is the "epitome of the art of lying" -- he spoke the literal truth in all that he said, and thereby deceived (as he intended). He spoke the truth, but he did not speak *all* the truth: he failed to mention to the searching soldiers that while Peter was "under the table," he was *also* under the rug, and in the root cellar. And, speaking the (partial) truth, he said it in such a way so as to be disbelieved: he counted on the soldiers misunderstanding what he said, he counted on the soldiers believing that he was "lying" to them and therefore on them not believing what he said. And, I think his answer angered them, for they took the answer as mockery, and made them careless. Had no one said anything, I think the soldiers would have found Peter (this isiwhy I think God was guiding Cocky in what he said).

Allow me one more outrageous claim -- you *already* understand, and likely agree with, what I've said. You just haven't carefully thought about it and thus haven't articulated the fullness of your understanding of what lying is and is not.

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Monday, September 27, 2010

What a wicked man ...

... along with being a sissy-crybaby hypocrite with respect to the non-wicked aspects of the very attitude of which he boasts.

Addendum (2010/09/28):
To perhaps aid in the commbox discussion, I'm adding (the significant part of) Vox's post --
Culling the weak and simple

From the blogosphere:
As an observer to this blog controversy, I am reminded of many similar incidents over the past six years of my blogging. I can certainly remember posts that I authored that (1) were taken the wrong way; (2) really upset folks in an unpredictable way or to an unpredictable degree; and/or (3) prompted personal and quite vindictive attacks. I remember the awful way I would feel for a day or two, afraid to even look at my email for fear of comments that felt like knives being thrown my way. The feeling (let's call it "bloghorror") is hard to describe. First, bloghorror is in part just a reaction to being attacked, but it's also a shame at having hurt someone else, even unintentionally, and it's also an anger at the completely unfair nature of the response. But most of all it's this feeling of being misunderstood. And unfortunately, there's no way to cure this. In 2005, my first reaction would be to explain myself, so that the blog audience would say, "Ah, I understand now." It took me a year or two to learn that once your audience has concluded that you are the devil saying devil things, any effort to explain will just add to the arsenal of the ammunition that will be hurled back at you.
As I read this, I was filled with a mix of incomprehension, amusement, and scorn. Needless to say, an AWCA feels no shame at the idea of having hurt someone else, intentionally or unintentionally, because sometimes an emotional evisceration is the entire point of a post. As it is said, no pain, no gain. By inflicting pain, I am merely helping others to grow. The humiliation that is felt by an interlocutor whose arguments have been methodically carved up by remorseless logic is my gift to them.

I ask for no thanks. Artistry is its own reward. ...
This is the beginning of his post, this is what he intentionally chose to quote and comment upon from his target's post.

There is *nothing* in what he quoted which justifies what he said in the part of his post I have quoted.

Now, let us consider the next (and reasonable) thing this particular fool said:
And there is no shame in being misunderstood. Being misunderstood is the norm. ...
Obviously, and by his own standard (*) and admission, Mr Beale is among the "weak and simple" who deserve to be "culled." For, his target didn't say she'd felt shame at being misunderstood ... she said she felt shame at having hurt others, even unintentionally. Her mention of being (feeling, actually) misunderstood was to say that that feeling was the larger part of what she is calling "bloghorror," which was the temptation to just give up on blogging due to the negative, and often unfair, nature of (some of) the responses to what she'd previosly written.

(*) by his own standard -- except, of course, that he is a hypocrite: he cannot and will not abide criticism of what he says and does. The more just/deserved and to-the-point the criticism, the less he will abide it.

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The Quest for Cosmic Justice

Thomas Sowell: The Quest for Cosmic Justice

[Hey, Nicholas, yours isn't the only blog for which Sowell is a "blog fav" ;-) ]

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Dammit! Why Aren't You People Panicing Already!

FoxNews: White House: Global Warming Out, 'Global Climate Disruption' In
From the administration that brought you "man-caused disaster" and "overseas contingency operation," another terminology change is in the pipeline.

The White House wants the public to start using the term "global climate disruption" in place of "global warming" -- fearing the latter term oversimplifies the problem and makes it sound less dangerous than it really is. ...

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New Moslem comic book superhero on the way

From the 'iOwnTheWorld' blog: New Muslim [sic] comic book superhero on the way
Yup, a disabled super hero that can control steel with his mind! Pretty cool stuff. Of course, I would probably make legs, but I am no Muslim [sic] super hero. If you want to learn more about the “Silver Scorpion,” MSNBC has the story here. I might just start my own comic with a Muslim [sic] Woman that has X-Ray eyes so she can see through her full burka while following her husband around.
In case it's not obvious, I posted this mostly for the sake of sharing the humor of that last comment.

I stopped caring about comic books about 40 years ago -- even then, and even as a kid, I simply grew to be disgusted with the "liberal" political indoctrination that was more and more prominent in them. If I still cared about comic books (and if I didn't already know that they long ago ceased to be about fun stories), I might have shared this in an attidude of "Can you believe this? Propaganda as comics?"

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Deism ... and Miracles

This post may be seen as a companion-post to an older post ('Science! and Miralces ... and Skepticism!'), which was about the incoherence (and self-mockery) of a certain sort of "scientific" opposition -- which is to say, an expression of scientism -- to the posibility of miracles. But here, the target is not modern atheistic scientism, but its older brother, the early-modern "Age of Reason" Deism.

Doug Benscoter has a small post on the distinction between 'deism' and 'theism' (Random Thought in the Theist/Deist Distinction); the content of this post is a comment I made there.

Ilíon: It seems to me that to say that "[t]he theist believes in miracles, whereas the deist rejects them" is to say that the deist believes or asserts God to be incapable of effecting miracles. And, it seems to me ultimately to mean that the deist believes or asserts "nature" to be superior to God.

Doug Benscoter: Or, as in the case of Spinoza, God and Nature are understood as synonymous (pantheism). The creation event (creatio ex nihilo) is already the greatest miracle of all, which is why I've never understood the deist's insistence that miracles are beyond God's purview or power.

Ilíon: As someone who writes computer programs ... and plays computer games ... the Deist position on miracles strikes me as analogous to someone asserting that I, as the author of a computer program, cannot write into the rules of the program a “back door” giving me an ability to modify the program’s data as it executes.

But, even that analogy is weaker than I mean … it’s just that I don’t expect most people to understand the analogy I really mean. But I’ll attempt to explain.

In my first job out of college, a long, long time ago, I coded in mainframe assembler (mostly maintaining code written ages prior) for a couple of small mainframe computers; one so ancient it didn’t even have harddrives. On the front of the ancient computer were a couple of panels of indicator lights with toggle switches beneath them.

These switches allowed one to set bits (and thus bytes) relevant to the computer’s memory, the lights indicating whether a particular bit was on or off. One panel was to set an address indicating a memory location, the other was to see - or change - the content of that memory location.

So, if a program was chugging along on the computer and encountered a fatal error condition everything stopped, and computer operator either purged the computer, and executed something else, or contacted me so that I might try to get around the problem at the moment and understand it so that I could resolve it for the future.

Now, as I said, one set of toggle switches allowed one to change the content of memory locations - I could change not only the data which at that moment had been being operated upon, but the actual loaded executable code of the program itself!

Now, of course, to make an extensive change on the fly like that would have taken more time and effort than simply to pull up the source code, make the appropriate changes and recompile, and then have the operator restart the execution from the beginning.

Mostly, what I did was change some data in the specific record then being processed, or changed the loaded executable code to have it skip over some problematic section of code/logic.

But, the point is, I *could in principle* have completely rewritten the program’s currently loaded executable on the fly.
It seems to me that the Deist denial of the posibility of miracles is analogous to asserting to me, "No, you can't!" (in principle completely rewrite, on the fly, the offending data or logic of the program).

Now, that's just an analogy, and while an analogy may illustrate a point, it is not an argument.

For argument, we turn to Mr Benscoter's observation: "The creation event (creatio ex nihilo) is already the greatest miracle of all, which is why I've never understood the deist's insistence that miracles are beyond God's purview or power." Understanding of which observation, of itself, is all we need in order to see that the Deist insistence on the impossibility miracles (or, at any rate, the popular understanding that there is such an insistence) is incoherent, and thus irrational.

Or, as Crude observes in a different form and context, with respect to Deism, once one has acknowledged the creation, and thus has acknowledged that there is a Creator, then one has no rational ground for asserting that The Creator *cannot* perform what people (even pagans) have always termed 'miracles.'

This is not to say that all, or even most, claims of miracles follow from a correct understanding of what occurred and why.

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Emergence ... and Vallicella

This item touches on but is not about Stephen Hawking's new book.

Rather, this post is about the content and subject-matter of this old post and this one. Specifically, it's about my claim and argument that "a whole may never be greater that the sum of its parts" and about William Vallicella's (the 'Maverick Philosopher') refusal even to consider what I had said to that point (and to let it stand on his blog) or to let me further explain to his friend my objections to and criticisms of his (the friend's, and perhaps Vallicella's, though I'm not sure about him) belief in 'emergence' or 'supervenience' as truly being an aspect of reality.

As I was listening to a YouTube "video" (here, on Glenn People's blog) of William Lane Craig discussing some of the public claims about the content/argument of the recently published (at the time, not yet released) book by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow ('The Grand Design'), a realization (and simplification) came to me concerning the concept of 'emergence.'

First, I'll present my transcription of part of Dr Craig's talk, starting at the 2:58 mark:
... So, there's nothing that I can see, so far, that is really different or new in this book, 'The Grand Design.' So, what I would encourage readers to do is to first read 'Reasonable Faith' [a book by Craig], where I interact with Hawking's views on the origin of the universe and the 'fine-tuning' of the universe, and then in light of that discussion ask yourself the following questions as you look at Hawking's new book:

Number one, what new developments, what new theories are featured in this new book; is it simply a re-explanation of the Harting-Hawking Model and the 'Many Worlds' hypothesis, or is there something new here? If there is not anything new, that's fine, but then we want to ask, how has Professor Hawking then responded to the criticisms of his earlier work that have been issued in the interim. There have been many responses in the literature to Professor Hawking's earlier claims, so does he respond to those criticisms, and if so, how?

Secondly, with respect to the claim that the universe came into being spontaneously from nothing, Professor Hawking writes in the Wall Street Journal article, "As recent advances in cosmology suggest, the 'laws of gravity' and quantum theory allow universes to appear spontaneously from nothing. 'Spontaneous creation' is the reason there is something, rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist." End quote.

Now, what we need to ask Professor Harking here is, how is the word 'nothing' being used in these sentences? Does he mean by the word 'nothing' what the metaphysician or philosopher means, namely, 'non-being;' does he mean literally 'nothing' in the sense of 'non-being?'

And if he is using it in this philosophically correct sense, then he needs to address the metaphysical problems of how 'being' can arise from 'non-being.' If his theory suggest that 'being' literally originates from 'non-being,' without any sort of cause, then that, I think, is metaphysically problematic and requires an explanation. One problem that would be raised is, then, why it is that only universes of this sort come into being from non-being? Why not anything? Why not bicycles or Beethoven? Or root-beer?

If universes can pop into being from non-being, without a cause, then why can't anything and everything just pop into being from non-being without a cause? You cannot say that it is only due to certain quantum gravitaional constraints, because if there's truly 'non-being' then there is no quantum gravity, there is nothing, and nothingness cannot be constrained because nothingness isn't something, it is 'non-being.' ...
The realization/simplification which came to me is this: the belief in 'emergence,' and the belief that "a whole may indeed be greater that the sum of its parts," is *precisely* the belief that "'being' can arise from 'non-being'."

Now, I had always understood this ("in my gut," so to speak); I had always understood the term/concept 'emergence' to be philosophically and logically specious, to be a word on a par with 'abracadabra!,' which is why I oppose (and mock) the belief. I had always understood 'emergence' to be the belief that something can indeed just pop into existence (which is why I oppose, and mock, the belief). But I had not understood it, and my opposition to it, articulated in just this simple and direct philosophical manner.

Continue reading ...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Random thoughts on 'Game'

I beg Gentle Reader's indulgence if "Game" is unfamiliar (*) ... one hasn't missed much, I'm thinking. This post is meant primarily as a response to someone on another blog. But, I figure that if I'm going to take the time to answer the fellow, I might as well post it on my own blog.

Also, this may be another of "those posts" ... the sort Cathy doesn't want her nephew even to see. 'Cause there is probably going to be some "language" in it.

(*) For instance, one of my sisters is finally reading some of my posts, and I'd just bet that she's never heard of "Game."

First, the background --

Recently, the blogger at 'Haley's Halo,' whom I understand to be a relatively young Christian woman who nonetheless pays attention to "Game," as though it and its aficionados have anything worthwhile to say about human beings, put up a post called Hypergamy and the stigma of being the back-up plan. Now, it's a fairly good little essay, in spite of its anti-Christian presuppositions.

Skepticism seemingly being my nature, I made a comment questioning one of the "givens" of "Game" that she accepts and asserted: namely that women are naturally "hypergamous."
Haley: "Given women’s hypergamous natures, …"

Ilíon: Do women really have a hypergamous nature (any more than men have a promiscuous nature (*) )? Or is that largely, or mostly, social conditioning or expectations? - women certainly seem, on average, to have a sheepish nature with respect to the expectations, no matter how odd, of their social circle.

And, whether women do have a hypergamous nature, doesn’t the nature of what constitutes “marrying up” vary by social conditioning or expectations? And, if it is women’s nature to “marrying up,” how can societies in which women are expected to “marry down” last from generation to generation? (many American Indian peoples, including the Aztecs and Mayas) I mean, how can a society fundamentally at odds with the natures of either women or men endure?

And, if women have hypergamous natures, considering that in modern-day America most black-white interracial pairings are between a white woman and a black man, does that mean that in modern-day America black men generally have higher status and better prospects than white men? Or, does it mean something else … like say, that the “social elites” constantly portray that pairing as most desirable … and women tend to do what they’re told they’re expected to do?

Haley: "Given women’s hypergamous natures, however, I started wondering if more church women would say yes to a date with a man who had just been out on a date with another woman from the same church group."

Ilíon: Women are competitive with other women. Also, they’re humans … and as humans, they tend, especially when more immature, to most want what someone else already has. So, a man that no other woman seems to desire will be seen by most women as undesirable … it has next to nothing to do with his qualities, but rather with the perception, which doesn’t even need to reflect reality, that *other* women want him.
By the way (in reference to my claim that women are generally sheepish), that sister who finally sometimes reads my blog is a most unsheepish woman. Without going into details, most woman can be made to say or do just about anything, including confessing to terrible crimes of which they are innocent, if one convinces then that one has the ability to take away their children if they do not "cooperate." This didn't work when a young (female) prosecutor-on-the-make tried to use my sister as one of the bodies on which she built her career.

In case the term is unfamiliar, "hypergamy" is a sociological/anthropological term referring to marraige patterns in a given society whereby persons of one sex typically (and/or by social expectation) marry persons of higher social status. In common terms, it means "marrying up."

So, if women are naturally "hypergamous," then women would always, or near enough as makes no difference, seek to marry men of higher social status than themselves.

However, when "Game" aficionados claim that "Women are naturally hypergamous," what they mean, bluntly, is "Women are sluts by their very natures." Or, to be less direct about it, they mean, "By their very natures, women *always* have their feelers out for a "better deal" than the man with whom they currently have sexual relations."

Now, I won't deny that there are women like this -- hell! some of them are even my relatives, whom I painfully love, and can I assure Gentle Reader that it is no picnic seeing and trying to live with the damage they pointlessly inflict upon themselves, their (passing) men and their children -- but to claim that *all* women are like this, and by their very natures? I'm sorry, but that's bullshit.

Moreover, the new man is almost never a "better deal" than the discarded man -- but, and this is the important thing, he is generally "more exciting" than the discarded man. And I don't mean that he's better in bed (and even if he were, how would a woman know that *before* she has dumped her man), I mean that he brings emotional "drama" into her life.

There are many factors which go into explaining why so many contemporary women are so willing to make of themselves sluts, but "hypergamy" is not one of them.

Later, 'Y81' commented:
Y81: Ilion’s point about competitiveness (as opposed to hypergamy) reminds me of how I started dating my wife. I was at a party, and, as the party was breaking up, I said to another girl, “why don’t we have lunch sometime.” (The other girl wasn’t really a romantic interest, but I was trying to get married, so I was on a campaign to have dates with everyone. You have to kiss a hundred frogs to find a prince, you have to have a hundred lunches to make a sale, etc.) Anyway, my wife was piqued that I hadn’t asked her. I actually didn’t know her very well, which is why. So she said, “What about me? Why aren’t you asking me to have lunch?” So I got her number and later I called her, because obviously a girl you don’t know very well is a better prospect than a girl you have already written off as a romantic prospect. The rest is history.

As my wife said later, her original motivation was not a strong feeling for me, much less a hypergamous impulse, whatever that would mean in this context, but pure competitiveness, that a guy was asking another girl out, and not her.

To which 'Cane Caldo' responded:
And that is why they call it Game. A textbook example.

To which I quipped:
But “Game” is still BS, including its textbooks.

To which 'Cane Caldo' replied:
On another thread, here, I asked what you meant by “Game is BS”, and you declined to answer…unless you waited several days.

I ask again.

So, at last, Gentle Reader, we come to my response to 'Cane Caldo,' which is the prompting of this post.

"... and you declined to answer ..."

1) Did I, now?
2) Do I answer to you -- do I stand at your beck-and-call? (Do you agree to stand at mine?)

"On another thread, here, I asked what you meant by “Game is BS” ..."

I mean precisely what I said (I guess I just roll that way) -- on whatever level one cares to analyze it, "Game" is BS. Given the fondness of "Game" aficionados for deploying acronyms -- which ought in itself to be a strong clue that "Game" just might be BS -- perhaps saying it is "BS" was too simple or direct. Perhaps I ought have said that "Game" is WCBS and had left it up to you to ascertain whether the "WC" stands for "world-class" or "water closet."

Let’s look at one aspect, the constant whinging of the wannabe “Alphas” (*) that “I’m a nice guy -- really I am -- but I *have* to act like an asshole to get the girls! 'Cause girls just don't notice nice guys, these days!!!” (All the exclamation marks are because "Game" aficionados strike me as actually being pussy-whipped girly-men, and as such surely must write like junior-high girls.)

Look, any fellow who is trying to “get the girls” is *not* a nice guy; he’s a cad or an unsuccessful wannabe cad. So, these “Game” aficionados are not merely dishonest, they’re also pathetically dishonest with themselves.

(*) That ranking system, by the way, is another aspect of the intense bullshittery of “Game,” as though a man’s worth as a man is measured by how much pussy he gets … and, moreover, by the diversity of it. Or that a woman's worth as a woman is measured by how "hot" she is; that is, by how many cads and wannabe cads currently (for time stops for no "hottie") desire to use her as though she were nothing more than a masturbation machine.

Or, let’s look at another aspect of it, Roissy’s [for Gentle Reader's benefit, 'Roissy' is one of the main "Game theorists"] characterization of women as “hypergamous” by nature and his theories and techniques on how to use that to one’s advantage. Hypergamy is about marriage, but “Game” is all about avoiding marriage while doing one’s best to indulge oneself, at the expense of other human beings, in the sexual benefits of it.

"Game" is all about using other persons, and ultimately oneself, as mere things, as means to the end of getting one's rocks off. Marriage is about something wholly different than using other human being as mere things.

Or, let’s look at another aspect of it, the risible claims of Roissy and his followers that they long for a society of traditionalist virtue, but that they, poor things, simply must make do and make their way in the feminist-dominated anti-virtuous society in which they find themselves. Is this not like the man throwing kerosene into the burning theater asserting that he longs for a society in which people do not yell “Fire!” in crowded theaters?

A virtuous man is virtuous all alone, if needs must; and he certainly does not consciously and intentionally add to the anti-virtue of his society.

"Game" aficionados are liars and hypocrites -- contrary to their constant assertions, they are not opposed to feminism and the destruction it necessarily inflicts upon our society as a whole (and which must ultimately lead to the total collapse of the society and the nation) and upon all the individuals who comprise the society. Rather, they intensely desire to freely and fully partake of the libertinism which is the natural, and intended, result of feminism; while, at the same time, whinging that no one has thought to keep for them a stash of "pure" women reserved on some upper shelf for when they are finally ready to "settle down."

Look, if you're all about "getting pussy" (or "getting cock," if you're a woman), then "Game," despite its essentially false and wholly inadequate anthropology, may be of some utilitarian value to you. But stop calling yourself a Christian, and stop calling yourself a "good person," for you are neither. And stop whinging that there are no good women (or good men, if you're a woman) left any more -- there are no good women (or men) in your purview because that's not what you're looking for.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

The Hermeneutics of Stephen Hawking

In their recently co-authored book ('The Grand Design'), Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow inform the world that they have rendered The Creator "not necessary" -- it's 'Science!' don't you know. (See this minor review in USA Today: "Hawking book explains creation of universe minus God")

Now, the 'Science!' worshippers (who, in fact, tend to hate the real thing) can be counted upon to believe, or at least to assert -- for they do so with monotonous regularity every time 'Science!' does away with God -- that we "religious" people (you know, Jews and Christians, for those are the only “religions” (*) anyone cares about getting rid of) are sure to be fearful and enraged, or at the very least nonplussed, by this newest (ha!) pronouncement of 'Science!'

Already, I’ve read several non-fearful and non-enraged and very much plussed reactions to and/or analyses of the claims of these Speakers For 'Science!.' One of the best I’ve encountered is the following -- Michael Flynn (‘The Ofloinn’): The Hermeneutics of Stephen Hawking

Mr Flynn’s conclusion is most amusing.

(*) When westerners speak of some generic, and thus non-existent, "religion," especially when they mean to denigrate "religion," they generally mean specifically Christianity, or if they are of Jewish origin, Judaism. Such denigrators will sometimes, either explicitly or by implication (or even merely insinuation) use "religion" to also include Islam ... when the mean to elide the differences between Biblical religion and Koranic religion, and attribute to Christianity (or Judaism) the aspects of Islam which horrify westerners.

Edit (2010/09/26):
Here is a YouTube "video" (on Glenn People's blog) of William Lane Craig discussing some of the public claims about the content/argument of the book (at the time of the talk, not yet released).

This also relates to Crude's comment -- "To put a different spin on what Flynn argued, this is a lot like saying that God isn't necessary to explain the universe, because Pure Act will do that job. And to someone who doesn't know much philosophy, that may actually sound correct. To someone who does, they're going to remember that for Aquinas and others, "Pure Act" was another word for God."

The distinction to which Crude alludes is that between 'actuality' and 'potentiality.' An entity which is "pure act" has no potentiality to it: it is what it is (which just happens to be similar to God's self-revealed name in Exodus 3:14 "I am who/what I am"). An entity which is "pure act," as it has no potentiality to it, cannot be other than it is ... and it cannot change, for to be able to change is to possess potentiality.

Edit (2010/09/27):
Keep in mind a point Mike Flynn made in his analysis of these supposedly new "theories" -- that the word 'universe' is being used equivocally. He didn't explicitly use that word, but that what shakes out when one thinks about it:
... At one time the term "world" meant the universe. Then "world" was restricted to "planet" and the universe was called the "universe." Now Hawking [and others] is not talking about the universe, that is, the collection of all things that exist. He is talking about
a single, self-contained physical structure, comprising a “spacetime manifold” and particles and other things moving around in that spacetime.
IOW, the term "universe" is now being restricted to a "space-time continuum" within a structure of many such manifolds. Call the larger structure "a system of universes." ...
Thus, These "new" "theories" are really just another way of advancing the age-old atheistic claim that "the 'universe' is eternal and uncaused."

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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Perhaps because he whines like a dog

Alleged-President Obama has recently whined (pun fully intended) that "They talk about me like a dog."

In response, an amusing comment on 'Small Dead Animals' was that "He could end all of this if he'd just show us his dog licence."

(Another round of comments on 'Small Dead Animals' here.)

The context of the comments is alleged-President Obama's whine that "... And over the past two years, that’s meant taking on some powerful interests. Some powerful interests that have been setting the agenda in Washington for a long time, and they’re not always happy with me. They talk about me like a dog. That’s not in my prepared remarks, but it’s true."

More here.

Even aside from the fact that none of us really know that The Won meets the (very simple) Constitutional requirements to hold the presidency -- and thus none of us really know that we have a legitimate President -- this petulant child-man never can *be* a president, because he's not a man, he's not an adult.

This pathetic poseur is falsely accusing his opponents, who tend to be on the conservative spectrum, of treating him the way he (and his ilk) treated Bush (who wasn't even a conservative), and have treated anyone in public life who is opposed the "liberal" agenda to "radically transform America."

Can you imagine G.W.Bush, whom the "liberals" *did* (and do) "talk about [as though he were] a dog," acting-out like this in public? Can you imagine Ronald Reagan, whom the "liberals" hated, with that special passion to which only that can aspire, when he was alive, acting-out like this in public?

Hell, can you imagine even Richard Nixon acting-out like this in public?

So, we have here not just a petulant child, but an intellectually dishonest petulant child.

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Monday, September 6, 2010

Dems' Daddy Warbucks

Ezra Levant: George Schwartz, the Jewish Nazi

About the only thing Mr Levant mentions that was news to me was the French conviction for 'insider trading.'

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From 1957 -- There is No 'Fourteenth Amendment'!

David Lawrence (in U.S. News & World Report, September 27, 1957): There is No "Fourteenth Amendment"!

(h/t James Fulford, on V-Dare: Ramesh Ponnuru Wrong, Again, (Guess Why) On Civil Rights)

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