WorldNetDaily: Unrestrained Madness

Buffoon AwardThe jolly logo adorning this post is in honor of WorldNetDaily (WND), the journalistic organ that won our Buffoon Award and that constantly confirms the soundness of that decision.

WND is an absolutely execrable, moronic, and incurably crazed publication. Over and over again it proves itself to be an instrument of idiocy, a wretched rag, a deep pool of theocratic throw-up, a sinkhole of stupid, a fountain of feculence — well, you get the picture.

Having said that, we present to you, dear reader, some excerpts from Is green the new red (communism)? This item appears at the woeful website of WorldNetDaily, and it’s by Ellis Washington — a leading light at WND.

Ellis is a man who postures as an intellectual. He may actually believe that he’s an intellectual, but his writing is low-grade stuff, sprinkled with the sort of “idea dropping” that we’ve come to expect from those who try to appear knowledgeable about the work of great thinkers.

To the extent that Ellis ever attempts to say anything that is both original and intelligent, he fails spectacularly. Perhaps the best example is one we wrote about here, Scripture Trumps Darwin, when he informed us of “the syllogism that was a foundation of Western civilization”:

If A = B, then A + B = C.

What do you make of that founding syllogism of our civilization? To us, the premise “A = B” leads only to the conclusion that “A + B = 2A.” Nothing more. Which can be reduced to 1 + 1 = 2, and what do we make of that? Ellis uses it to claim that “A + B = C.” What’s “C” supposed to mean? Who knows? He’s not talking about lightspeed. But Ellis fancies himself an intellectual; and he may indeed be the brightest bulb at WND.

Okay, now we know who Ellis is, and we know what WND is. The stage is set for some excerpts from Ellis’s latest article. The bold font was added by us:

Ten days ago, Harold Lewis, Ph.D., emeritus professor of physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, tendered his letter of resignation to Curtis G. Callan Jr., Princeton University, president of the American Physical Society, because Dr. Lewis finally realized that he could no longer support what he called the “successful pseudo-scientific fraud” of global warming.

Why do we care? Let’s read on:

Remember, to the Democratic Party and RINO Republicans, truth doesn’t matter, because to them truth is relative. All that matters to liberals and progressives is Nietzsche’s “Will to Power” and control over the people. Like the Islamic doctrine Taqiyya, which sanctions deceit to further Islam, to progressives the end justifies the means; therefore, lying, stealing, killing and perverting the Constitution and science is acceptable to utopian socialists as long as they “change the world.”

Okay, lefties lie. We know that. It’s so obvious that even Ellis knows it. We also know of a few on the right who lie. But what does this have to do with the subject matter of your Curmudgeon’s humble blog? Let’s see where Ellis goes with this:

Progressives are very resilient, so when Soviet communism finally collapsed after 70 years of world wide tyranny, progressives and liberal Democrats pushed the existential [sic] green movement to the forefront, which was in reality the same old exhausted red communism in a new disguise. Green is now the new red (communism).

We’ve often said that we don’t trust the motives of those who are constantly seeking power based on government “solutions” to the latest “crisis.” To that extent Ellis is correct, but his brush is far too broad.

Okay now, brace yourself — here comes a big, juicy excerpt. See if you can spot the stupid. To assist you in this challenging endeavor, we’ll highlight a couple of items:

Liberalism isn’t new. It’s been called by different names over time. Note some of the sophistic ideas liberal Democrats and progressives have used to control and denigrate society over the past 250 years:

* The Age of Enlightenment (humanism, atheism, skepticism)
* Karl Marx (socialism, communism)
* Charles Darwin (evolution, eugenics, separation of Christianity and science)
* Jeremy Bentham, John Austin (advent of positive law, end of natural law)
* Sigmund Freud, Alfred Kinsey, Benjamin Spock (sexual promiscuity, family deconstruction)
* Woodrow Wilson, FDR, LBJ, Obama (welfare state)
* Walter Lippmann, Herbert Crowley, John Dewey, H.G. Wells, Margaret Sanger, George Bernard Shaw (education propaganda, progressivism, moral relativism)
* Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao (state socialism, totalitarianism)
* Rachel Carson (“Silent Spring” [1962]), Ira Einhorn, Al Gore, Van Jones (“Green New Deal”)

That’s what we wanted to bring to your attention. Observe Ellis’ complete miscomprehension of the Enlightenment — which is unquestionably the best thing to happen to our civilization since emerging from the Dark Ages (it’s even better than A+B=C). With that, and his catastrophic misunderstanding of Darwin’s work, you can see again the quality of Ellis’ intellect. (We were impressed, however, by his use of the word “existential” — at least he spelled it correctly)

Except in the case of politicians, we always refrain from calling people idiots, retards, maniacs, and the like. But Ellis’s little list is a severe test of our gentlemanly restraint. Nevertheless, we’ll behave ourselves.

The rest of Ellis’ rant — about leftists in the Green Movement — has some validity. But that’s not because all greenies are lefties. Rather, it’s because there are leftists who seek to exploit every movement that offers them the possibility of attaining power. They can easily be spotted by the solutions they propose — they’re the ones who want to control things.

What Ellis fails to grasp is that the political motivation of a dedicated cadre of stealth leftists within a movement has no bearing on the underlying value of the movement’s non-political message, or the science that may be involved. Those must stand or fall on their own merits, not on the way they may be misused.

Hey Ellis, if lefties in a movement “prove” the worthlessness of the movement’s basic message, then ponder this: There are well-known leftist clergymen within Christianity. Whatcha gonna do about that, Ellis — rant about how religion is a commie plot? Why not? After all, A+B=C.

Copyright © 2010. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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83 responses to “WorldNetDaily: Unrestrained Madness

  1. Ellis has listed a very strange group of bed-fellows. Enlightenment thinkers in cabal with communist dictators? FDR and Hitler pursuing the same agenda?

    A translation of his rant might be: “I am a committed theocrat, in favor of a bible-based worldwide government, and am therefore vigorously opposed to the undisciplined modern world in general, and specifically all of these people and ideas. So there!”

    That probably reflects the philosophy of WND as well.

    Under the multiverse hypothesis, these people should have been on an alternate universe that split off from ours 500 years ago, but somehow missed it and are hanging around in ours. Or perhaps they’re more like a living fossils, a creatures long thought extinct but found alive in the current age.

  2. “Ten days ago, Harold Lewis, Ph.D., emeritus professor of physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, tendered his letter of resignation to Curtis G. Callan Jr., Princeton University, president of the American Physical Society, because Dr. Lewis finally realized that he could no longer support what he called the “successful pseudo-scientific fraud” of global warming.”

    So, let me get this straight… a PHYSICIST who studies and practices the science of PHYSICS resigned from some professional organization of PHYSICISTS whose goal is to “draw [together] more than 12,000 of the top scientists involved in PHYSICS research and education from throughout the world” based on his concerns about ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE???

    http://www.aps.org/meetings/
    (emphasis mine)

    ??????????????????????

    I’m confused.

    Moving on…

    “Remember, to the Democratic Party and RINO Republicans, truth doesn’t matter, because to them truth is relative. All that matters to liberals and progressives is Nietzsche’s “Will to Power” and control over the people.”

    What??? The Religious Right wants to create a theocracy in which people have no freedom to make their own moral judgments! The SOLE PURPOSE of religion (and by extension the Religious Right) is to CONTROL people by prescribing to them “absolute” rules of ethics which the Religious Right wants to codify into law. And Nietzsche’s “Will to Power” is a socialist/progressive/democrat doctrine? Is he frakking serious? Read a little Rand and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.” Ask the Republicans about their stance on the megarich and corporations and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.” Jeez. And… I’m sooooo sick of hearing the old canard that if you don’t stand for something (here Christianity) you’ll fall for anything (relativism). That precludes the (correct IMO) observation that epistemological and normative “truths” (if you will) are socially constructed and evolve over time. Social construction =/= relativism. Duh.

    “to progressives the end justifies the means; therefore, lying, stealing, killing and perverting the Constitution and science is acceptable to utopian socialists as long as they “change the world.””

    LOLWHUT!??!!?!? Methinks some serious projection is going on here, not to mention the complete inability to detect irony.

  3. LRA says:

    Read a little Rand and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.”

    I have, and it’s not. But you knew I’d say that.

    Ask the Republicans about their stance on the megarich and corporations and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.” Jeez.

    Try not to confuse a desire for prosperity and a “will to power.” As I’ve said before, your economics professor was the Jack Chick of economics.

  4. I, too, have read Nietzsche (and Heidegger on Nietzsche, and Nehamas on Nietzsche… I did a presentation on Nietzsche for a rhetoric class). Nietzsche critiques “egalitarian” forms of government– believing that society is made up of “masters” and “slaves.” The master mentality sees things in terms of “good” and “bad” while the slave sees things as “good” and “evil”. He critiques Christianity as a “slave” religion. He calls for the Ubermench to overcome the constraints of the master/slave culture in which he (and it’s always HE in Nietzsche) finds himself. He declares “God is dead” for the Ubermench… the Ubermench is the “rising sun” who blazes a new cultural path. This is the “will to power” that Neitzsche speaks of.

    You don’t think that sounds like John Gault? You don’t think the megarich see themselves as Ubermenches… or at the very least economic “masters” over us economic “slaves”? You don’t think the megarich use their money power to keep themselves in that power position (because in their minds they deserve it) to the detriment of an egalitarian society that they give lip service to but don’t actually believe in? To me, this is the republican party. They are the party of corporate and megarich interest. They are the party of pushing Christianity on people because they have a vested interest in keeping us sheep-like so that we’ll work and consume and work and consume. To them, this kind of economic enslavement is not “evil,” it’s just business. I don’t vote democrat because I think they are the end-all-be-all party of the people, but democratic politicians at least tend to have platforms that seem to want to level the playing field (on education, on taxes, on social programs, etc). You’re anti-federalist. I get it. You’re a big believer in the rugged individual. I get it. I’m just not. I want to see *some* kind of leveling of the playing field since we supposedly live in a society where people are “equal”. Corporations and the megarich (as powerful entities) sure as hell aren’t going to do that. The only other power entity that can do that is government. Since I have a say in government via my vote (and have no say whatsoever about what goes on in a corporation other than by government regulation), I use my say to vote on issues that I think level the playing field.

  5. Just to be clear, I think the megarich may see themselves as Randian heros a la John Gault, making policies that free them from the pesky constraints that would limit their freedom to be ubermenches… but to me that kind of self-justification and idealization is ridiculous. At best, they may realize that they are the economic “master” to a group of economic “slaves” and shrug it off as good business. Screw that. I don’t want to be anybody’s slave.

  6. LRA says: “Screw that. I don’t want to be anybody’s slave.”

    You need to explain how, merely by going to work for some rich guy, or some big corporation, you become a slave. You can always quit to pursue other opportunities. All your “master” has done is create a job and offer it to you. You can always refuse.

    Your only slavery opportunity, as I see it, is if you submit to me — your Curmudgeonly master. You know you want to.

  7. “Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves. ”
    Herbert Marcuse

    That’s the simple answer. The complex answer involves all the evidence that supports that statement.

    True freedom would be having my basic needs (food, shelter, clothing, and psychological enrichment) met in such a way that I would have the option not to work at all. That is a freedom only the rich have.

  8. “Your only slavery opportunity, as I see it, is if you submit to me — your Curmudgeonly master. You know you want to.”
    Well creep ME the **** out. If LRA hadn’t made it clear in the past that she’s a person of the girl persuasion, would you have written that?

    That said, a question for the Curmudgeon:
    If 150 million Americans decide to drive by the nearby BP station and buy their next tankful at another company’s station because they think BP’s safety policies suck, that’s the way the free market corrects bad behavior on the part of a corporation, correct?

  9. Put another way, I don’t want to be reduced to a human “resource” and I don’t want to be a cog in some corporate machine.

  10. He calls for the Ubermench to overcome the constraints of the master/slave culture in which he (and it’s always HE in Nietzsche) finds himself. He declares “God is dead” for the Ubermench… the Ubermench is the “rising sun” who blazes a new cultural path. This is the “will to power” that Neitzsche speaks of.

    You don’t think that sounds like John Gault?

    “Open still remaineth a free life for great souls. Verily, he who possesseth little is so much the less possessed: blessed be moderate poverty!” Thus Spoke Zarathustra pp. 89-90.

    Does that sound like John Gault?

    There are bits in Nietzsche that certainly sound Randian, and politically Nietzsche was anti-egalitarian. Which doesn’t keep leftish types from recognizing that the will to power discussed by Nietzsche almost certainly trumps the economic reasoning of Marx.

    However, Nietzsche’s works overall are far more about a kind of Romantic Ubermensch artist type of man than about the Hegelian notions of master and slave types. That, and the overwhelming importance of interpretation in the transmission of information and knowledge. Miss those, and you’ve missed Nietzsche.

    He is certainly not first and foremost about economics or politics at all.

  11. Nietzsche was often contradictory in his messages. I’m not just referring to Zarathustra, but also to Beyond Good and Evil, The Birth of Tragedy, The Gay Science, etc.

    Specifically, in Zarathustra, Nietzsche criticizes Christian forms of virtue, justice, and pity. (Values that the republican party claims to have as “Christians” but that they don’t exhibit in their desire for unmitigated capitalism. They are “Christians” for the sheep they are herding. Once herded, they use the sheep as resources, IMO.)

    Furthermore, Neitzsche’s Zarathustra expounds on how “The state, another escape from reality, is one of the greatest enemies of individualism. It tells the citizen what to do, how to live; it places his personality within its own” (Frank N. Magill, “Masterpeices of World Philosophy, p. 419. Sorry I don’t have the text right in front of me.)

    *That* is John Gault. The “will to power” is the will to rise above the “rabble”. How does one do that in a capitalist society? By making money!!!

    Does that sound like big government democrats to you? Democrats who want to help the “rabble” by giving them welfare? No, it sounds like republicans. Just sayin’.

  12. Remember– my original discussion on this was in response to this quote:

    “Remember, to the Democratic Party and RINO Republicans, truth doesn’t matter, because to them truth is relative. All that matters to liberals and progressives is Nietzsche’s “Will to Power” and control over the people.”

    I’m sorry, but big government and welfare are certainly NOT “will to power.” That is ridiculous.

  13. LRA, you are very quirky today. First you complained about Nietzsche — of whom few business owners have ever heard. Now you’re quarreling with something in a WorldNetDaily article. When you regain your senses, you will submit to me.

  14. I have a love-hate relationship with Nietzsche. I have a hate-hate relationship with the religious right, tho.

    LOL!

    You’ll never keep me down, Curmie!!!! I will overcome! I am the Over(wo)man!!!!!!

    😛

  15. LRA says: “I have a love-hate relationship with Nietzsche.”

    As you do with me. But in the end, you’ll fulfill your destiny. You will submit. You know I’m right.

  16. LOLOL!!!!!

  17. Nietzsche was often contradictory in his messages.

    Yes, but he also meant to create and not to stick to a single message or “purpose.” That’s another problem with trying to claim that he fits with Galt or Rand, both of whom were rather consistent in their stated purposes.

    I’m not just referring to Zarathustra, but also to Beyond Good and Evil, The Birth of Tragedy, The Gay Science, etc.

    Yes, and? Nietzsche doesn’t become a defender of the bourgeoisie in any of those either. Greed, which Rand praises, is never a virtue for Nietzsche, it’s more a symptom of ressentiment.

    Few are made for independence–it is a privilege of the strong. And he who attempts it, having the completest right to it but without being compelled to, thereby proves that he is probably not only strong but also daring to the point of recklessness. He venture into a labyrinth, he multiplies by a thousand the dangers which life as such already brings with it, not the smallest of which is thatno one can behold how and where he goes astray, is cut off from others, and is torn to pieces limb from limb by some cave-minotaur of conscience. If such a one is destroyed, it takes place so far from the understanding of men that they neither feel it nor sympathize–and he can no longer go back! He can no longer go back even to the pity of men. #29 Beyond Good and Evil Hollingdale’s translation

    That is no bourgeois dream of a master over slaves that he is presenting there, despite the fact that he sees the masses as little more than serving the powerful manipulators (there’s obviously a lot of truth to that). He’s generally as dismissive of the bourgeoisie, writing (of more noble people that), “they shut their ears to the raving stupidity and the noisy yapping of the democratic bourgeois. Ibid. #254

    Specifically, in Zarathustra, Nietzsche criticizes Christian forms of virtue, justice, and pity.

    And he wrote, “I love him whose soul squanders itself, who wants no thanks and returns none: for he always gives away and does not want to preserve himself.” #4 Thus Spoke Zarathustra Kauffman’s translation. Yes, he’s opposed to Xian morality, but not to what he considers to be a more “natural morality.” One might certainly criticize his vision if it were to be implemented into public policy, but it would not be correct to say that his Ubermensch is anything like a bourgeois capitalist.

    Furthermore, Neitzsche’s Zarathustra expounds on how “The state, another escape from reality, is one of the greatest enemies of individualism. It tells the citizen what to do, how to live; it places his personality within its own”

    Well that’s incredibly selective. Zarathustra proclaims “Behold the superfluous! They gather riches and become poorer with them. They want power and first the lever of power, much money–the impotent paupers!” #11 Ibid

    The “will to power” is the will to rise above the “rabble”. How does one do that in a capitalist society? By making money!!!

    Except that he condemns the grab for money.

    Look, I do have some sympathy for what you’re saying. In a seminar about On the Genealogy of Morals we were discussing the strong and the powerful, and I began to discuss it in terms of the bourgeoisie, and the complaint about that was that Nietzsche’s “noble man” wasn’t really the rich in our society. Yes, but the fact is that in that work Nietzsche’s actually discussing sociology and morals, and at that point you have to quit blathering about some virtually unknown “noble man,” but the actual people at the top.

    However, while I maintain that at that point one has to consider the real “Overmen” rather than some ideal, in most of Nietzsche’s work it’s pretty clear that he’s not considering the vast majority of the wealthy in our society to be the Uebermenschen at all, rather he’s pushing something more like Aristotle’s “noble man.” And as long as we’re not talking about really existing society, we can discuss such a “noble person” as at least a kind of ideal, whether or not that ideal is very meaningful.

    Does that sound like big government democrats to you?

    Of course it does. Indeed, any number of leftists would think so as well, since they’re well aware of the power considerations driving big government in bourgeois society. One could still discuss the merits of particular programs without in the least supposing that Democratic politicians are not self-serving.

    Democrats who want to help the “rabble” by giving them welfare?

    I’m not here to discuss the merits and demerits of welfare. I’m largely apolitical because I have no intention of taking responsibility without power, although I do not mind critiquing power. Anyone who thinks that both parties aren’t pandering to ressentiment for the sake of their own power is being incredibly naive.

    No, it sounds like republicans.

    No, it sounds like both. All you have to do is to step outside of your cozy little world of dialectical “truth” where one side is supposedly “right” and the other is “wrong” to see that both parties are essentially serving the interests of the yapping bourgeoisie, just competing factions.

    And your little black and white world hardly has room for the deliberately inconsistent vision of the multi-minded Nietzsche.

  18. I’m sorry, but big government and welfare are certainly NOT “will to power.” That is ridiculous.

    You certainly don’t understand the will to power in ressentiment, then. Nor even Marx’s critique of bourgeois means of quelling discontent among the masses.

    Sure, politicians don’t like having their hands on the reins of big government. No, what’s the point of having a great deal of power, rather than a little power?

    What you need is to understand Nietzsche and his critique of morality as a means of gaining power. One need not resort to his overall view in response to it, but one most certainly would do to understand power wielded in the name of morality, rather than to be a pawn of those who do as you are now.

  19. I have a love-hate relationship with Nietzsche.

    Since you don’t understand him, you hardly have a love-hate relationship with him, rather with a kind of ape of Zarathustra.

    I have a hate-hate relationship with the religious right, tho.

    Then you may as well just go ahead and hate-hate Nietzsche, as he understands the religious as you do not, and happens to dislike the bad faith and, well, ignorance of pious liberals such as yourself:

    Among those in Germany for example who nowadays live without religion, I find people whose ‘free-thinking’ is of differing kinds and origins but above all a majority of those in whom industriousness from generation to generation has extinguished the religious instincts: so that they no longer have any idea what religions are supposed to be for and as it were merely register their existence in the world with a kind of dumb amazement…. Every age has its own divine kind of naivety for the invention of which other ages may envy it–and how mjuch naivety, venerable, childlike and boundlessly stupid naivety there is in the scholar’s belief in his superiority, in the good conscience of his tolerance, in the simple unsuspecting certainty with which his instinct treats the religious man as an inferioir and lower type which he himself has grown beyond and above–he, the little presumptuous dward and man of the mob, the brisk and busy head- and handyman of ‘ideas,’ of ‘modern ideas’!” #59 Beyond Good and Evil Hollingdale’s translation

    I rather like that one. It’s more or less a passage that the petty bourgeois professors pass over, because, well, it more or less exposes the simmering hatred and contempt for the masses that they very often have. OK, sure, it’s an argument from authority (or more correctly and defensibly, an example of thought from someone whose penetrating analyses of social psychology have been found to be valuable by those who really studied Nietzsche), but, then again, there’s much in sociology and in social psychology that essentially argues in favor of Nietzsche’s perception of the scholars’ typical arrogance and contempt for those that they feel “better than.”

  20. Glen-

    I do understand Nietzsche better than I’ve been able to express here on a blog. My main point in discussing him is that he is not a “liberal” the way the idiot in the World Net Daily article paints him to be. In fact, he often looks rather like a libertarian… that has been my point.

    My further point is that the policies of the Democratic platform (and I never said it wasn’t full of pandering politicians) tends to be one that looks out for middle and lower classes. I didn’t say that the politicians there aren’t liars or fake, but that if I have to vote for someone, I’m going with the group who, at least *seems* to represent my interests and the things I care about. I’ll vote for the lesser of two “evils” if you will (LOL!)

    The bottom line is that I am a humanist and I don’t like the idea of an economic aristocracy squeezing every last drop of work out of the middle and lower classes to the point of rendering our lives meaningless. I am not now nor will I ever be a human “resource”. I am a human *being*. Period.

  21. Oh- and I DO understand the religious. I was raised in a very conservative, religious (fundamentalist) household and I was a Christian “on fire for God” for about a decade. I deeply reject it now because I have found that world view to be irreparably flawed.

    And since you seem to think you know me so well, I might also add that accusing me of black and white thinking is hardly fair. Or productive. It is difficult to get into the subtleties of philosophy, science, or politics on a blog. I’m not writing a paper, I’m trying to point out an inconsistency.

  22. LRA says: “… I have found that world view to be irreparably flawed.”

    You are still one worldview away from enlightenment. When you manage to shake off the Orwellian notion that free enterprise is slavery, all will be revealed.

  23. LOL! Give me the evidence… I may change my mind!

  24. LRA says: “Give me the evidence… I may change my mind!”

    You can’t flip the burden of proof. You claim that a job is slavery, and welfare is freedom. That’s your claim. You expect me to worry about evidence? You’re the one with the claim that needs support.

  25. Whoa! Never said welfare is freedom… my ex-boyfriend (who is blind [permanently disabled] and has been since childhood) receives a whopping $750 a month in “welfare” every month. No real freedom comes from that paltry amount.

    What I said was that only the rich have freedom from toil and economic repression.

    Anyhow, my opinions have been shaped by a plethora of people who I don’t necessarily agree with wholesale, but who have discussed the problems of class struggles/ societal structure either ideally or pragmatically (and this list is by no means comprehensive):

    Ancient Greek Philosophy, notably Plato
    Eastern Philosophy, notably Confucius
    Humanist Philosophy, notably Thomas More
    British Empiricist Philosophy, notably Thomas Hobbes and John Locke
    French Enlightenment Philosophers, notably Montesquieu, Voltaire, JJ Rousseau
    Utilitarian Philosophers, obviously Bentham and Mill
    Pragmatic Philosophy, notably Jane Addams and John Dewey
    Proto-existentialist, Phenomenalist, or Existentialist philosophers, notably Nietzsche, Heidegger, JP Sartre, Albert Camus,
    Post-Colonial/ Negritude/ African Diaspora Philosophers, notably Cesaire and Senghor
    Feminist Philosophers, notably Mary Wollstonecraft, Simone de Beauvoir, Judith Butler, and Martha Nussbaum
    Marxist Philosophers and the Response to Marx, (obviously Marx), notably Heidegger, Henry Marcuse, and Andrew Feenberg
    Philosophers of Ethics/Theories of Justice, notably John Rawls

    ALL of these philosophers discuss the repression of people by people in power. ALL of them! And with the Post-Colonial turn (from the end of merchantilism to the rise of industry), people begin to focus on people with MONEY as oppressors or the oppressive life lived by the poor. There are so many philosophers I’m leaving out because I just can’t think of them off the top of my head, but the fact is that I’ve read and re-read and re-read the case for economic oppression of the poor by the rich throughout the various courses I’ve taken, and that is why I have the views I have.

    If you feel that my education has been too liberal, then point me toward conservative philosophers who can successfully make the case that unrestricted free enterprise doesn’t lead to turning people into mere resources. I have yet to see that argument.

  26. LRA says:

    If you feel that my education has been too liberal, then point me toward conservative philosophers who can successfully make the case that unrestricted free enterprise doesn’t lead to turning people into mere resources. I have yet to see that argument.

    You won’t get anywhere reading pre-Enlightenment sources. And you won’t read Rand, although I recommend her “Capitalism, the Unknown Ideal.” Try Milton Friedman’s “Capitalism and Freedom.”

  27. I will look at both. Going into research mode. Will be back later with questions…

    🙂

  28. Ira Einhorn?? Did WND actually scoop Klingoffer on that one? If so, Klinghoffer must be kicking himself?

  29. Frank J says: “Ira Einhorn?? Did WND actually scoop Klingoffer on that one?”

    Good catch!

  30. LRA, while you’re out researching, Hayek is worth a once-over. Besides “The Road to Serfdom,” it’s quite worth reading “The Constitution of Liberty.”

  31. Gabriel Hanna

    Karl Popper, “The Open Society and Its Enemies”. I don’t know if Popper was a libertarian of any sort, and don’t really care, I suspect he wasn’t, but Open Society is about how Plato and Marx and their followers were enemies of freedom.

  32. Gabriel Hanna

    Oh, yeah, the Lewis thing. He didn’t like the APS statement on global warming. Being a physicist doesn’t mean you can’t be badly wrong about something.

    The reason the APS has a statement about global warming is not because of a cabal of greens, though most of the physicists I know are farther to left than most people. It’s because the science of global warming is pretty much entirely physics. So it’s not unreasonable, as LRA would have it, for Lewis to resign over this; climate science is fundamentally about physics and you can’t hive it off into “environmental science” and declare physicists unfit to comment. The climate models are all based on physics and very simple physics at that and that is why APS has a statement about it at all. That’s what APS is there for.

    Lewis is, in my opinion, and in APS’s opinion, wrong to say the things he does about climate science. He’s scientifically wrong. It’s not because he has the wrong degree, it’s because he’s wrong about the physics. The earth has been getting warmer over the last fifty years because people have been putting extra carbon dioxide in the air. No one who doubts this conclusion has put forward any alternative explanation that withstands scientific scrutiny.

  33. LRA/Curmy

    That was very educational. Thanks.

  34. Well, well, well…

    “While she differed sharply from Nietzsche on many issues, including rationality, free will, and individual rights, his influence is evident in her provocative, often aphoristic, point-counterpoint writing style, as well as in her “transvaluation” of traditional values and her powerful affirmation of life and joy and the spirit of youth. In the Introduction to the 25th Anniversary edition of The Fountainhead, she stated that the novel’s sense of life is best conveyed by a quotation from Nietzsche’s Beyond Good and Evil: “The noble soul has reverence for itself.” (For The Fountainhead’s partly sympathetic and partly critical engagement with Nietzsche’s ideas, see Hunt 2008.)”

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ayn-rand/#LifWor

    Looks like my assertions aren’t *that* off, are they?

  35. Gabriel Hanna

    If your assertions had been limited to influences on writing styles and spirited affirmations, they might not have been off, but you claimed something very specific. Quoting Rand once quoting a sentiment of Nietzsche–who said a lot of things–doesn’t support your other assertions.

    To say it does is called quote-mining, when a creationist does it. I call it quote mining when ANYONE does it.

  36. Gabriel Hanna

    No one may enter this house who does not know geometry. I approve of that sentiment.

    Look at me, I’m a Platonist! Um, no.

  37. Gabriel- Thanks for clearing that up. I was confused, as I said. I know environmental science utilizes physics… it also utilizes biology, chemistry, space sciences, and other sciences… it is interdisciplinary in the way that cognitive sciences are interdisciplinary, right?

    It just seemed very odd to me that a physicist would declare himself an expert on environmental science to the point of resigning from a professional organization like that… kinda the way it seems odd to me that a biochemist (like Michael Behe) would declare himself an expert on evolutionary science to the point of embarrassing his university.

    Gabo- Thanks! 😀

  38. I made a connection between Rand and Nietzsche on my own because the two stances on the individual looked familiar. In other words, I’m not that far off as it turns out to be TRUE that Rand was influenced by Nietzsche.

    That is not quote mining, that is defending a connection that I noticed ON MY OWN.

  39. Gabriel Hanna

    LRA, Nietzsche said a lot of things and he is also famously difficult to understand. A lot of people were influenced by Nietzsche and some of his aphorisms have passed into popular culture. You can’t just find her quoting something Nietzche said approvingly and then claim her for a disciple.

    I don’t think Ayn Rand’s opinions rise to the level of philosophy–she’s the Jack Chick of philosophy, to use SC’s phrase, but she didn’t consider herself a follower of Nietzche–her “three A’s” were Aristotle, Aquinas, and Ayn Rand. She only followed herself, which is why she ended up weird and crazy.

  40. In case you forgot, here was my assertion:

    Read a little Rand and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.”

    That assertion is based on the Nietzscheian concept that:

    “The noble soul has reverence for itself.”

    …in addition to the other things I have already discussed.

  41. UGGGHHH! I’m only pointing out a connection that turns out to be correct! Sh*t, yall! You’d argue with me even if I agreed with you.

    And if Rand is so crazy, then why do yall want me to read her to begin with??? I’ve already researched her and found that many people don’t consider her worthy of scholarly effort.

  42. Gabriel Hanna

    It just seemed very odd to me that a physicist would declare himself an expert on environmental science to the point of resigning from a professional organization like that… kinda the way it seems odd to me that a biochemist (like Michael Behe) would declare himself an expert on evolutionary science to the point of embarrassing his university.

    I don’t think you can compartmentalize the sciences this way. If biologists decided that organisms were doing something that violated the laws of physics, then biologists are just wrong. To some extent you can study biology without knowing the laws of physics but the physical laws are fundamental. If climate scientists or biologists said something that broke the law of conservation of energy, then so much the worse for them.

    This is why Dembski works so hard with his “information” argument–if evolution breaks the laws of physics than it is false. Just like geologists would be wrong if they said we live inside a hollow earth.

    Behe is trying the same thing–to show that the laws of physics do not allow evolution. It’s all the same argument.

    I don’t know much about biology, but I know elephants can’t levitate and that you couldn’t have an ant the size of a horse. I know that cells can’t make energy from nothing.

    As for climate science, I don’t know a lot about it but I do know that hand-waving doesn’t beat computer simulations. I do know that almost every claim the “skeptics” make is a lie or distortion analogous to those made by creationists, those that I have the ability to check for myself anyway.

  43. Gabriel Hanna

    And if Rand is so crazy, then why do yall want me to read her to begin with???

    I never suggested that. I don’t think you’ll benefit much from reading Rand. When I read Atlas Shrugged I wanted my 36 hours back. She was a terrible writer and a terrible thinker, and she thought that her desires rose to the level of self-evident laws of nature. She was a life-long smoker, and could prove from first principles that being a smoker was the most rational thing she could do.

    Well, that sort of person is delusional. There are some sentiments she had that I agree with, but she’d not someone I’d hold out as a model or a mentor.

  44. Gabriel Hanna

    Read a little Rand and tell me that’s not “Will to Power.”

    That assertion is based on the Nietzscheian concept that:

    “The noble soul has reverence for itself.”

    Oversimplify much? If you ask me, “Will to power” is hand-waving nonsense and you can read anything you want into it. Ayn Rand didn’t consider herself a Nietzchean, and I’m sure she levelled some kind of anathema at Nietzsche and Nietzscheans just like she did everyone else, including libertarians.

  45. “No one may enter this house who does not know geometry. I approve of that sentiment.

    Look at me, I’m a Platonist! Um, no.”

    Your example here is off. The idea of the ubermench is evident in Rand. The ubermench is a major part of Nietzsche’s philosophy. Someone who emulated the concept of eidos could be said to be influenced by Plato. It doesn’t mean that this person is a Platonist. I didn’t say that Rand was a Nietzsche follower, I said that his concept of the ubermench apparently influenced her… and it did. This is what I backed up with my reference from the SEP.

  46. So, you’re saying that Nietzsche is a liberal democrat and that the World Net Daily article is correct that “the Democratic Party and RINO Republicans, truth doesn’t matter, because to them truth is relative. All that matters to liberals and progressives is Nietzsche’s “Will to Power” and control over the people”?

    Also, before you accuse me of oversimplifying, actually read the whole thread. I have said many things in support of the connection I have made.

  47. Gabriel Hanna

    The idea of the ubermench is evident in Rand. The ubermench is a major part of Nietzsche’s philosophy.

    Cats are pets and dogs are pets, therefore cats are dogs.

    I didn’t say that Rand was a Nietzsche follower, I said that his concept of the ubermench apparently influenced her… and it did.

    There was quite a bit more that you said:

    You don’t think that sounds like John Gault? You don’t think the megarich see themselves as Ubermenches… or at the very least economic “masters” over us economic “slaves”? You don’t think the megarich use their money power to keep themselves in that power position (because in their minds they deserve it) to the detriment of an egalitarian society that they give lip service to but don’t actually believe in?..

    many, many more cartoonish tropes follow. What you said is up there.

  48. Gabriel Hanna

    So, you’re saying that Nietzsche is a liberal democrat

    Can you read? You take me to task for not reading carefully, but I didn’t say ANYTHING except about climate science and Rand not being a Nietzschean.

  49. Gabriel Hanna

    LRA, I don’t like to fight with you. I generally like reading your posts–but when people disagree with you, you insist they must be stupid or evil. That’s hard for me to take, and I get cranky and mean. Which is not your fault, of course.

    If I actually said something like “Liberal democrats want to make us all serfs of the state”, that would be an insulting refusal to attempt to engage people like you who are liberal Democrats. And it’s what you do to me and SC and the others like us on a regular basis. Saying that we think we’re some kind natural aristocracy with a moral right to enslave people. It’s as absurd as accusing you of wanting to purge the kulaks and wreckers.

  50. Gabriel Hanna

    And I say that and I agree that I don’t practice very well what I preach. Oliver Cromwell said, of a religious controversy, “I beseech you in the bowels of Christ, consider that ye may be mistaken”–and then went on to butcher Catholics in Ireland. It’s a very common failing.

  51. Gabriel,

    Again READ THE WHOLE THREAD.

    In a nutshell, I said…

    That the WND accusation that Nietzsche is a liberal democrat/progressive is silly.

    That Nietzsche’s ideas about the individual rising above the rabble sounds like/ (and it turns out to be accurate) was picked up by Libertarian thinkers like Rand.

    Conservatives tend to be pro- rugged individual, anti-regulation of business, and anti-federalists.

    Ergo, conservatives are more likely to be influenced by Nietzsche, making the claim in the WND article difficult for me to believe.

    Are you prepared to argue against that? Are you prepared to show that liberal democrats are in fact influenced by Nietzsche as the WND article suggests?

  52. Gabriel Hanna

    That the WND accusation that Nietzsche is a liberal democrat/progressive is silly.

    I agree.

    That Nietzsche’s ideas about the individual rising above the rabble sounds like/ (and it turns out to be accurate) was picked up by Libertarian thinkers like Rand.

    This is false. It is. There have been too many people saying these things for thousands of years and every teenager thinks he’s a misunderstood genius held back by idiots. And Rand ANATHEMETIZED libertarians:

    “They are not defenders of capitalism. They’re a group of publicity seekers… most of them are my enemies… I’ve read nothing by a Libertarian (when I read them, in the early years) that wasn’t my ideas badly mishandled—i.e., had the teeth pulled out of them—with no credit given.”

    Conservatives tend to be pro- rugged individual, anti-regulation of business, and anti-federalists.

    If you actually paid any attention to what conservatives were saying of themselves, you couldn’t have written this. There are all kinds of conservatives.

    Ergo, conservatives are more likely to be influenced by Nietzsche, making the claim in the WND article difficult for me to believe.

    It’s not enough for you to say that Democrats don’t follow Nietzsche, you’ve got to pin it on conservatives. It’s your us vs them mentality that Glen Davidson spoke of.

    But your “conservatives” are cartoons.

    Are you prepared to argue against that? Are you prepared to show that liberal democrats are in fact influenced by Nietzsche as the WND article suggests?

    So you think that arguing that democrats don’t follow nietzsche is the same as arguing that conservatives do? I’m guessing you had the Jack Chick of logicians for your logic class.

    The opposite of “All Democrats are followers of Nietzche” is “All non-followers of Nietzsche are not Democrats”. Nothing about conservatives in there.

  53. “Saying that we think we’re some kind natural aristocracy with a moral right to enslave people. It’s as absurd as accusing you of wanting to purge the kulaks and wreckers.”

    There is a long and (generally) respected history of scholars critiquing the economic aristocracy and the plight of the poor. I happen to be in agreement with these critiques. I’m not personally attacking you or Curmie, I’m saying that the Republican Party has turned into a bewildering thing to me. I have two major reasons to dislike the party: the “Christians” who don’t look anything at all whatsoever like people who actually believe what Jesus supposedly preached, and the Fiscal Republicans who think that unrestricted free enterprise is a good thing. Of these two groups, the Religious Right is most morally repugnant to me. They are hypocrites and liars. The Fiscal Republicans embrace a “selfishness” that I don’t agree with. I talk about it here because I figure that Curmie and others will put up with my protestations and even point me toward new reading material. I am passionate about beliefs. I’m sorry if that aggravates you. It isn’t really meant to.

  54. You are not summarizing what I said correctly. I’m getting very very frustrated.

    I said that conservatives are MORE LIKELY to be influenced by Nietzsche, not that ALL conservatives are influenced by Nietzsche.

    I also said that Libertarians picked up Rand. It doesn’t matter if she liked them or not.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism_and_Objectivism

    My understanding of conservatives comes from being raised among conservatives. I’m a Texan and my whole family is conservative. Very conservative. When I describe conservatives, I am describing people I know in real life. My extended family is a bunch of Religious Right nutjobs and my mom and my brother are staunch fiscal Republicans. If you find my observations cartoonish, then blame it on my family.

  55. Gabriel Hanna

    I’m saying that the Republican Party has turned into a bewildering thing to me. I have two major reasons to dislike the party: the “Christians” who don’t look anything at all whatsoever like people who actually believe what Jesus supposedly preached, and the Fiscal Republicans who think that unrestricted free enterprise is a good thing.

    LRA, that is a cartoon. It is just like if I said that all Democrats were hippies and Communists.

    I am passionate about beliefs. I’m sorry if that aggravates you. It isn’t really meant to.

    I’m passionate about treating people fairly, and judging them based on what they actually do and say, and not on a cartoon of them. You have seen me disagree forcefully with SC and nearly everyone who regularly comments here, generally when I think they are doing that.

    People who want less government regulation or lower taxes or whatever it is, want those things because they think everyone will be better off if those proscriptions are followed. It’s fine to argue that those people are wrong. It is not fine to accuse them of a desire to ENSLAVE people, okay? Even if that WERE their desire, you’d still have to prove that the policies they advocate would make people worse off.

    I don’t want poor people to starve, and I don’t want them to be slaves to rich people. Neither does SC or anyone else who thinks like we do.

    Rather, we think that the market, in most cases, makes most people better off than they would be if it weren’t there. For example, compare “poor” now to “poor” in the 70s. (Remember black and white TVs?) Government regulation didn’t make cell phones so cheap you get them free with the phone service. (Remember when you had to rent your phone, and there were only a few kinds and you had to pay extra for the better ones?)

  56. Correction, I said that Rand was a Libertarian. I should have said that Libertarians are Randian. My bad.

  57. Gabriel Hanna

    I’m a Texan and my whole family is conservative. Very conservative. When I describe conservatives, I am describing people I know in real life. My extended family is a bunch of Religious Right nutjobs and my mom and my brother are staunch fiscal Republicans. If you find my observations cartoonish, then blame it on my family.

    LRA, I am an academic. I know honest-to-god, literally card-carrying Communists. For a while we had a professor who was personal friend of Fidel Castro and she took students to visit him. WSU isn’t Berkeley, but we’ve got them. If I judged you by that experience would it be fair to you?

    Would it be fair to judge gay people by what goes on at pride parades in San Francisco? Or would it be fair for me to judge all Latinos by the Mexican gang-bangers I went to high school with?

  58. Gabriel Hanna

    I should have said that Libertarians are Randian. My bad.

    But they aren’t. They never were. They agree with Rand on some things, and on other disagree, and different libertarians agree with different things! It’s all dogs are pets and all cats are pets, so cats are dogs.

    If you took the trouble to actually read what libertarians had to say about themselves, you’d know that! But you don’t.

  59. Gabriel Hanna

    Eh, I’m tired of cross-posting and I certainly don’t like talking about Ayn Rand, who has got to be the most overrated intellectual ever.

  60. “I don’t want poor people to starve”

    but you don’t want them to have welfare either.

    “I don’t want them to be slaves to rich people.”

    But you don’t want us to have nationalized health care, either, so that we can leave jobs that make us unhappy, even if we are sick or have a sick child.
    Neither do you want laborers to band together and form unions to protect themselves from abhorrent work conditions.
    Neither do you want to tax rich people at a higher rate, because somehow it seems fair to you that poor people should give away money they actually need to live on while rich people get to keep their extra yacht money?
    I could go on… but you’ll just accuse me of cartoonish representations here (not sure how to be fully nuanced on a blog without spending hours putting together a defense of each of my more general assertions… which I don’t have time to do.)

    I don’t agree with you that an unregulated free market economy could make people’s lives better any more that I think that a communist economy could make people’s lives better. If that is what you really believe, then I’d need to see the evidence that this is the case. We have a mixed economy that lies somewhere between those extremes. That is how it should be, IMO.

  61. Gabriel Hanna

    but you don’t want them to have welfare either.

    No. I want them to not be poor. I want them to have a roof over the heads and enough to eat and clothes to cover their nakedness. I want them to succeed to the level that their abilities and inclination will take them.

    And until last week when my wife got her first real job WE were poor, according to the federal government.

    But you don’t want us to have nationalized health care, either, so that we can leave jobs that make us unhappy, even if we are sick or have a sick child.

    Because I don’t believe that nationalized health care will do less harm than good. And I’m sorry that you can’t quit your job if you have bills, that’s part of being an adult. Sometimes you have to stick with things you don’t want to do. There is no system of economics or government that will take that away.

    Neither do you want laborers to band together and form unions to protect themselves from abhorrent work conditions.

    I do want them to form unions. I do not want the government to pass laws that say only union members can work in certain jobs–and these laws exist. I don’t want the government to say that if enough of your coworkers check a box on a card, then I automatically join the union and have to give them my money. This happened to me two years ago.

    Neither do you want to tax rich people at a higher rate, because somehow it seems fair to you that poor people should give away money they actually need to live on while rich people get to keep their extra yacht money?

    I’ve never said anything like this, anywhere.

    I could go on… but you’ll just accuse me of cartoonish representations here

    They are. You have me confused with a bunch of other people, some of whom don’t exist.

    I don’t agree with you that an unregulated free market economy

    WHICH I NEVER ONCE SAID I WAS IN FAVOR OF. There are only a handful of people who think that there should be an “unregulated free market economy”. Jack Chick Logic 101.

    We have a mixed economy that lies somewhere between those extremes. That is how it should be, IMO.

    If there were a medal for pointing out a blatantly obvious truth that 99.9999% of people would agree with, you’ve won it. That’s why I say you are arguing with cartoons.

    The argument is about HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH. That’s all it’s EVER been about! But you’ve GOT to demonize people who put the line somewhere else from where you put it!

  62. I get my understanding of Libertarians from websites like this one:

    http://www.lp.org/

    For instance, they talk about deregulating health care to make it “better.” So, how exactly is my ex-boyfriend, who is blind [permanently disabled] supposed to get health care coverage when a de-regulated system will exclude him based on his pre-existing condition??? That is NOT making it better.

    I get my understanding of the Republican party from websites like this one:

    http://www.texasgop.org/inner.asp?z=6

    … who espouses “Rugged Individualism: The entrepreneurial spirit of the individual that continues to solidify Texas as a world economic
    power.”

    How is it cartoonish to interpret that group according to THEIR OWN WORDS??? I realize that groups are made of individuals, but I’m concerned about the central issues that those groups espouse… that is not cartoonish, that is my attempt to survey a group of people whom I strongly disagree with!

  63. Gabriel Hanna

    I’m concerned about the central issues that those groups espouse… that is not cartoonish, that is my attempt to survey a group of people whom I strongly disagree with!

    Just more quote mining–remember that Gish put out a book, “In Their Own Words”, nothing but quote mines. You pull off two sentences from two webpages and that’s your “survey”? From the mere use of the words “rugged individualism” you get to conclude that the Texas GOP wants to enslave the poor to make yachts for the rich?

  64. Gabriel Hanna

    In addition, if you had paid any attention to what actual libertarians said about themselves you’d know that the Libertarian Party only represents a fraction of them, and that many libertarians think it’s a joke! (And did you notice how much Republican bashing was going on there?)

    But you’d heard there was a “Libertarian Party” and you put it in the google, and that’s your “survey” of people you strongly disagree with.

  65. From the libertarian website I just gave, on an *unregulated* free market:

    “A free and competitive market allocates resources in the most efficient manner. Each person has the right to offer goods and services to others on the free market. The only proper role of government in the economic realm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected. All efforts by government to redistribute wealth, or to control or manage trade, are improper in a free society.” – Libertarian Party Platform, Section 2.0 (adopted: May 2008)

    From the Texas GOP website, also on an *unregulated* free market economy:

    “9. A free enterprise society unencumbered by government interference or subsidies.”

  66. I’M NOT QUOTE MINING! I’m giving an EXAMPLE of what I’m talking about… do you want me to post the ENTIRE F*CKING PLATFORM on a BLOG???

    The Libertarian party is what it is. If you think it’s a joke, then perhaps you should take that up with them.

  67. Quote mining:

    “The practice of quoting out of context, sometimes referred to as “contextomy” or “quote mining”, is a logical fallacy and a type of false attribution in which a passage is removed from its surrounding matter in such a way as to distort its intended meaning.[1]

    Arguments based on this fallacy typically take two forms. As a straw man argument, which is frequently found in politics, it involves quoting an opponent out of context in order to misrepresent their position (typically to make it seem more simplistic or extreme) in order to make it easier to refute. As an appeal to authority, it involves quoting an authority on the subject out of context, in order to misrepresent that authority as supporting some position.[2]”

    How am I distorting the meanings here???? Do these things I’ve given as examples really mean something else? Do these people actually agree with me???? What surrounding material is going to change the actual meaning of the passages I have given????

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy_of_quoting_out_of_context

  68. “actual libertarians ”

    Yes. And I will pay attention to what actual Scotsmen say about themselves as well.

  69. Gabriel Hanna

    LRA, your first quote is not about an UNREGULATED market. Notice the role of government. You’re so busy quote-mining you won’t read.

    Your second quote is ANOTHER example of quote mining. If you actually READ THEIR PLATFORM IN ITS ENTIRETY, you would find that they believe in ALL SORTS OF GOVERNMENT REGULATION. They just call it something else. For example, notice their stance on pornography and on “flag desecration” and on requiring doctors to perform sonograms!

    They have one boilerplate statement declaring they want to no government interference and subsidies–and then a list of government interference and subsidies they wish to enact!

    But since conservatives and libertarians are different categories this is not surprising, except to people who believe in cartoons.

    But you are so focused on trying to score debating points with me, you don’t bother to comprehend what they have written.

  70. Gabriel Hanna

    What surrounding material is going to change the actual meaning of the passages I have given????

    Well, read the entire Texas GOP platform. They have a whole host of government and regulations and subsidies that they are for. But you tried to pretend that they oppose all of them.

    And I will pay attention to what actual Scotsmen say about themselves as well.

    This is a good point. But suppose I said things about Democrats and used Dennis Kucinich for all my examples, because he’s the one who says the most outrageous things. You’d think you were treated unfairly.

  71. I’m done here. Their websites speak for themselves. I’m not going to argue about it anymore.

  72. Gabriel Hanna

    RU 486 – We urge the FDA to rescind approval of the physically dangerous RU-486 and oppose limiting the
    manufacturers’ and distributors’ liability.

    Morning After Pill – We oppose sale and use of the dangerous “Morning After Pill.”

    Gambling – We continue to oppose gambling as a means of financing state government. Government–sponsored
    gambling has had a devastating impact on many Texas families. Moreover, we oppose any further legalization,
    government facilitation, or financial guarantees relating to any type of gambling including casino, riverboat, video lottery
    terminals (VLTs), slot machine, video keno, eight-liners, multi-state lotteries, and other games of chance including on
    Indian reservations. We support the repeal of the state lottery, and enforcement of existing laws and regulations related to
    gambling. We oppose dedicating any government revenue from gambling to create or expand any governmental program.

    Sounds like unregulated free enterprise to me!

  73. Gabriel Hanna

    The Libertarian party is what it is. If you think it’s a joke, then perhaps you should take that up with them.

    “Libertarian Party” is not the same thing as “libertarians”. My point all along has been that you have chosen not to acquire anything more than the most superficial understanding of what people who disagree with you say.

    Take your ball and go home if you like. That’ll show me that you try to understand other people’s points of view.

  74. LOL! How is it my fault that YOUR party is hypocritical???? If they say they are for unregulated (or laissez-faire) capitalism and DON’T do it, then they are LYING on their webpage.

  75. Gabriel Hanna

    If they say they are for unregulated (or laissez-faire) capitalism and DON’T do it, then they are LYING on their webpage.

    Politicians lie? I am clutching my pearls and hieing to my fainting couch.

    Next you’ll be telling me that the Guantanamo Bay prisoners are still there, despite the President’s promise to close it.

  76. (I’m not saying that democrats aren’t hypocritical. In fact, I’m pretty sure they are.)

  77. *sigh* Well, then I suppose I should just stop voting. In fact, I’m pretty sure that my old instinct that my vote really doesn’t matter in the long run because politicians are just manipulating us masses was probably right.

    I voted for Obama because I’ll be damned before I see Palin in the Oval Office.

    Whatever the case, to me the democrats are the lesser of two evils.

  78. Gabriel Hanna

    LRA, there’s not much point in continuing to shout at each other. If you want a representative (more or less) sample of what libertarians think, I’d suggest reading reason.com, http://www.cato.org, and the Wall Street Journal editorial page. If you want a representative (somewhat) sample of what conservatives think, I’d suggest http://www.nationalreview.com, http://www.commentarymagazine.com, and probably townhall or hotair, but those are going to angry up your blood (they angry up mine at times). Though a lot of conservatives do read those, and World Net Daily, just like a lot of liberals read Kos and Huffington Post.

    Let me say now that these suggestions are not my endorsement of the contents. I make it a practice to read a wide variety of things with which I disagree.

    But it’s not going to be a matter of a day or a week. I really don’t think you have the inclination to listen to people you know you don’t agree with. There are a lot worse character traits than that–all in all you’re pretty swell.

    I would appreciate it if you would at least let me say I believe something before you accuse me of believing it and impugn my motives for believing it.

  79. Gabriel Hanna

    Whatever the case, to me the democrats are the lesser of two evils.

    Yeah, well, for me it’s Republicans, generally. But you probably don’t believe everything every Democrat believes, and you’d be insulted if I suggested you did, you’re aware that there exist wide differences of opinion on the left; and other people might like to be extended the courtesy of having thought about what they want and having made a similar calculation, even if they didn’t come to the same answer.

  80. Gabriel Hanna

    I’m pretty sure that my old instinct that my vote really doesn’t matter in the long run because politicians are just manipulating us masses was probably right.

    I don’t think it is. I can’t speak for SC but I vote the way I do because I know that governments and parties and unions and universities and all organizations have their own interests and agendas, which they pursue whatever it is they might say.

    Like when UAW told us we were just signing cards for “information”, but we found out that those cards were really a vote and they were going to take hundreds of thousands of dollars from us, and we could only opt out at the risk of being fired. Some of the grad students were near tears. It was UNION! They wanted to HELP us! Yeah, well…

  81. Well! I take a bit of time off in order to sleep — something I do every 90 days or so — and I find that Gabe has switched avatars, he and LRA are having a knife fight, and the name of Jack Chick has been slung around more frequently than Klinghoffer mentions Hitler.

    As for libertarians (small “l”), LP party members (Libertarian with a capital “L”), and Ayn Rand fans (who have widely varying degrees of admiration for the ol’ gal), they’re quite different groups. But there are overlaps, as with humans, chimps, and orangutans. If you also consider conservatives and Republicans, there are still similarities and overlaps (e.g., a Rand reader may be a GOP member), but (to continue a bad analogy) you can’t really say they’re similar unless you broaden the population to include all mammals. Then, yes, there are similarities. The foregoing have similarities with Dems too, but only if the population is further expanded to include sponges and squid.

    In my long-ago days of being enthused about Rand and Reason Magazine, and the WSJ editorial page, I had friends who became state LP officers. I never joined or even went to a meeting, but I occasionally saw a bunch of LP types at social events held at my friends’ home. There were some intelligent people in the LP, and all of them could say the proper things about the evils of the income tax (although they probably lived on allowances from their parents), but on the whole they were the biggest collection of single-issue dorks I’ve ever encountered — draft resisters, drug legalizes, prostitution legalizes, and more than merely a few anarchists.

  82. LOL! Sorry, Curmie! I get a little exuberant sometimes.

    😛

  83. Hmmm. Laurie Lebo has an interesting article titled, “Unregulated Capitalism and Christian Fervor: Report from the 9/12 Rally at the Capitol”…

    http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/1840/unregulated_capitalism_and_christian_fervor:_report_from_the_9_12_rally_at_the_capitol

    She writes, “But no one was here to spread the message of St. Matthew: “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” This was all about the Gospel of Supply-Side Jesus.”

    LOL!!!