“Good People”

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I’ve mentioned my neighbor, the state cop, before. We know one another; I’ve been over to his house – and he to mine. He has an old bike – and we’ve hung out in our respective garages talking bikes (and cars). He seems to be a nice guy and probably is a nice guy … on this level. And yet, it is a near certainty he spends his workday committing numerous acts of petty and not so petty violence, “enforcing the law” without much caring – much less thinking about  – whether these laws are moral.good v. evil lead

Or so I must assume.

After all, he continues to enforce these laws –  and does not appear to have doubts or second thoughts about having done so.

The same mentality, in other words, as a German NCO in the Waffen SS who spent his workdays enforcing another era’s laws. Who went home afterwards to his wife and kids, whom he loved. Who had hobbies, waved to his neighbors. This disconnect is entirely common throughout the ages.

Like the German NCO, my neighbor is probably not a sadist who delights in his work. But he is very much a mindless automaton, just following orders.

He has told me so – openly.

I don’t write the laws, I just enforce them.

Or words to that effect. He said them with a shrug of indifference; just part of his day’s work.

This is one facet of the problem we face, which I’ll get into some more in a moment.

Also, I suspect that as regards some orders, my neighbor the cop strongly supports enforcement. Not in the sadistic sense. In the righteous sense. For example, while I doubt he’s a teetotaler with regard to the (currently) legal “drug” (alcohol) I am very confident (based on things he’s said to me) that he fully supports arresting and caging people at gunpoint, confiscating their assets and so on, who merely possess/imbibe/peacefully sell and exchange various currently not-legal “drugs.”

The irony is lost on him. The viciousness of the policy does not occur to him.omelettes

Und so weiter.

Remember Morpheus’ speech in the original Matrix?

Most people are not evil in the conscious sense. They are unconscious of their evil. They believe the matrix (i.e., the system, “the law”) is moral – and will stridently (violently, if need be) defend it. They believe they are doing the right thing. Cops, especially, have an almost religious order fervor about them – and “religious” is precisely the right word. Blind obedience to authority – because it is authority.

It is interesting to note that the public is being conditioned to regard them in a religious sense as well. To worship the state’s uniformed corps (both civilian law enforcement and military). When one “falls” in the “line of duty,” North Korean-style funerary rites ensue. Comrade Ogilvy from Orwell’s 1984 comes to mind.

Most people regard “evil” in an almost cartoonish way. Funny costumes, odd haircuts and quirky mannerisms. Superficialities.

But it is much more subtle. It masquerades as good.

Very few people – cops in particular – consider themselves or their work to be evil. Even history’s great psychopaths – Joseph Stalin, Adolf Hitler – were not mmmuuuhahhaha! evil men, rubbing their hands together in orgiastic delight at the thought of the suffering and mayhem they caused.

Quite the opposite, in fact.voltaire pic

Both men – and most such men – honestly appear to believe they are doing good.

A “greater good,” certainly (the Thousand Year Reich for Hitler; world communism for Stalin), however many eggs it was necessary to break in order to make their respective omelettes.

But good “omelettes” (as they saw it) nonetheless.

It’s a very important thing to understand.

We are not fighting evil. We are fighting a warped, misdirected sense of good.

It manifests in countless ways. The liberal who honestly regards himself as the great benefactor of mankind, notwithstanding the violence he directs toward actual flesh and blood men. The conservative who honestly believes he is opposed to “big government” yet approves – often passionately – government interferences with the freely made choices of other people when he disapproves of those choices, even when no harm is caused him or any other plausibly actual flesh and blood victim .. not comprehending that by refusing to defend everyone’s freedom he has destroyed the only viable basis for defending anyone’s freedom.

Good – and evil – must therefore be redefined.

Or, rather, they must be honestly defined.plato's cave

What then is good? It is the rejection of aggressive violence. A refusal to inflict harm. To accept that the only real good we can do in this world is the good that we do ourselves. With our own hands, our own resources – freely given. To accept that others may not see things our way and – so long as they are not doing us (or others) actual harm – to willingly leave them be.

Evil thus becomes self-evident.

It is aggressive violence. Inflicting harm. Causing pain. Imposing your “values” – and greater goods – on those weaker than yourself, using force. In sum, denying others their equivalent humanity. To place yourself in the superior position. To presume – to arrogate unto oneself – a kind of divine authority to rule.

It does not matter whether you are a “big king” or a “little king.” Evil consists in asserting kingship over others – whether wrapped in “divine right” or the ballot box.

My wish this Christmas is that people take a moment to reflect on the nature of good – and evil – and consider whether their actions comport with the former or the latter.

I believe that most people think themselves good; want to do the right thing. Are trying to to be good.

Here’s to hoping they succeed, someday.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

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553 COMMENTS

  1. The Godlovers and Govlovers are extreme altruists. As a Moral Panarchist I suppose I am an extreme egoist.

    The theme of this blog, I think, is to find a harmonious balance between these two extremes. Using the same cognitive processes you use to differentiate between beauty and ugliness. So too can you likewise distinguish between what is ethical and what is corrupt.

    “As a social being, man is part of a greater harmony, and, in order that he may contribute to the happiness of the whole, he must order his extra-regarding activities so that they shall not clash with his environs. Only when he has regulated his Internal and his social relations by this ideal can he be regarded as rule moral. The egoist and the altruist are both imperfect. In the ripe perfection of humanity, the two impulses will be perfectly adjusted.”
    – Anthony Ashley-Cooper (1670-1712)

    One way to understand the moral sense is to draw an analogy between it and other kinds of senses. Beauty is something we see in some faces, artworks and landscapes. We can also hear it in some pieces of music. We clearly do not need an independent aesthetic sense faculty to perceive beauty in the world. Our ordinary five senses are quite enough to observe it, though merely observing something beautiful is not by itself enough to appreciate its beauty. Suppose we give a name to this ability to appreciate the beauty in things we see: let’s call it the aesthetic sense.

    This aesthetic sense does not come automatically to all people with perfect vision and hearing, so it is fair to describe it as something extra, something not wholly reducible to vision and hearing. As the aesthetic sense informs us about what is beautiful, we can analogically understand the moral sense as informing us of what is good.

    People with a functioning moral sense get a clear impression of wrongness when they see or imagine someone being mugged, for example. People with a functioning moral sense get a clear impression of wrongness when they see or imagine puppies being kicked, for another example.
    – – –
    The Seasonal Cycles of Societal Liberty

    God Altruists Are Like the Fall
    Govt Altruists Are Like the Winter
    Libertarians Are Like the Spring
    Achieving Liberty and Being Left Alone Is Like the Summer

    The Summer Knows
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vBnp7YJ6UoY

    The summer smiles, the summer knows
    And unashamed she sheds her clothes
    The summer smooths the restless sky
    And lovingly she warms the sand, on which you lie

    The summer knows, the summers wise
    She sees the doubts within your eyes
    And so she takes her summertime

    Tells the moon to wait and the sun to linger
    Twists the world round her summer finger
    Lets you see the wonder of it all

    And if you’ve learned your lesson well
    There’s little more for her to tell
    One last caress, its time to dress, for fall

  2. Tor Libertarian (and Stephan Molyneux) are brilliant but “Clover” “thinks” he is stupid. WTF is up with that? Is “Clover” that retarded or just bratty? Are Amerikan publik skewls *that* bad? I enjoyed the Idiocracy link! Idiocracy is what happens when you have a parasitic welfare state and allow effeminate “Clover” (and most women, I admit) suffrage.

    • Hi Charleen,

      Clover strikes me as both natively unintelligent and utterly conditioned; a perfect product of government schools. In this respect, he is the “new man” (woman?)… the human cattle a society such as this one requires to function.

      • Eric,

        We disagree on this. I think clover is a paid troll. He knows better. He has to by now. I’m trying to imagine the most stubborn people I know on this subject being THIS stubborn and I’m having a hard time. I could never get them to engage in conversations that go on this long but I can’t imagine them repeating themselves this often and ignoring stuff IN PRINT quite this often. Clover is being paid. I can’t prove it but that is my best guess.

        • It’s a pretty safe bet.

          Why would he bother otherwise?

          It’s got to be the money that keeps him coming back for more punishment.

          He probably has no respect for ideas, and says to himself, “Hey, I’m laughing all the way to the bank.”

          • It’s a pretty safe bet.

            Why would he bother otherwise?

            It’s got to be the money that keeps him coming back for more punishment.

            He probably has no respect for ideas, and says to himself, “Hey, I’m laughing all the way to the bank.”

            Or not.

          • If he was really that stupid I doubt he could keep his internet working;)

            His behavior is more like that of the trolls who derail conversations that you posted about awhile back, than that of a genuine moron. I’ve dealt with genuine morons and they’re usually very slightly better than clover, if only because of the ability to reword their stupid arguments slightly more.

    • Did you ever consider that Clover may be just jerking our Chains,I dont think He could be that dull unless He is a control mogul-Kevin

    • Thx 4 the blogging fuel Charleen, If you’re commenting here, you’re likely a tweener or a bright yourself. Great to have you here.

      Most people, even cherished loved ones, are dims. Clover comes across here as a far below the pathetic mean dark here, but I think in day to day life, he’s likely an upper midlevel dim slightly distinguishable from all the rest of the moth covered filaments.

      I sometimes suspect but don’t know Amerikans are bulking up and losing male vigor because the whole nation is being subjected to some kind of stealth chemical castration regime. Perhaps not via polymer oestrogens or other suspected methods, but by way of something with similar effects anyway.

      In isolation, we have few means to determine what really is being done to us by the Atillas. There are so many Witch Doctor counterintel ops underway to obscure their mafia moves, we may never know for sure.

      Parasites, effeminates, they’re not problematic per se, we gain from the increasing neurodiversity in the long run, assuming enough of us overcome today’s MI6 tests and prove ourselves evolved enough to continue to reproduce and maybe even enjoy life once in a while.

  3. My 12 year old daughter is more adult than these bratty runt Liberal parasites.
    Why do you call them “Clover”? Feeble-minded parasitic brats that think they own other people?

  4. Me2 – sorry to take so long to respond, I did not have time at the moment, and now I have lost your thread.
    Re: I Corinthians 8:2, if you are trying to use that to tell me I can’t KNOW anything, then you are taking it out of context. Just 2 verses later Paul says “we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is no other God but one.”
    I’ll have to get back to you later re: the “Kingdom of Israel” but I have a feeling you would not believe me even if I had been there at the time.

    • I have difficulty with ‘lost the thread’ and ‘can’t find that’ type responses. This is the internet. If someone can’t manage a ‘Me2’ search on a single page, learn how to before claiming to have any sort accurate knowledge on anything.

      Sorry PTB, you are not the worst offender but you certainly seem to be using the same playbook as the rest of your ‘team’.

      I Corinthians 8:2, I am sure it is obvious to you, but for us dullards, please explain how I took it ‘out of context’. What exactly does two verses later have to do with;

      ‘And if any man think that he knows any thing, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know.’

      Superior interpretation?

      How about this interpretation;

      ‘And if any man think that he knows anything,…. Whoever has an opinion of himself, or is conceited with his own knowledge, and fancies that he knows more than he does; which is always the case of those that are elated with their knowledge, and treat others with contempt, and have no regard to their peace and edification:’

      WHy is this not the ‘correct’ interpretation?

  5. The 1.2 billion “good catholic” people will find a global warming encyclical from the Pope this March in their pews.
    http://www.catholic.org/news/green/story.php?id=58194

    Pope Francis explained:

    “An economic system centered on the god of money needs to plunder nature to sustain the frenetic rhythm of consumption that is inherent to it.

    “The system continues unchanged, since what dominates are the dynamics of an economy and a finance that are lacking in ethics. It is no longer man who commands, but money. Cash commands.

    “The monopolizing of lands, deforestation, the appropriation of water, inadequate agro-toxics are some of the evils that tear man from the land of his birth. Climate change, the loss of biodiversity and deforestation are already showing their devastating effects in the great cataclysms we witness.”

    The coming encyclical is informed by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the world’s single-longest running scientific mission. The institution has already affirmed that global warming is real and a threat to people around the world, especially in developing nations.

    http://www.casinapioiv.va/content/accademia/en/events/2014/sustainable/statement.html

    Humanity has entered a new era. Our technological prowess has brought humanity to a crossroads. We are the inheritors of two centuries of remarkable waves of technological change: steam power, railroads, the telegraph, electrification, automotive transport, aviation, industrial chemistry, modern medicine, computing, and now the digital revolution, biotechnologies and nanotechnologies.

    These advances have reshaped the world economy into one that is increasingly urban and globally connected, but also more and more unequal.However, just as humanity confronted “Revolutionary Change” in the Age of Industrialization in the 19th century, today we have changed our natural environment to such an extent that scientists are redefining the current period as the Age of the Anthropocene, that is to say an age when human action, through the use of fossil fuels, is having a decisive impact on the planet.

    If current trends continue, this century will witness unprecedented climate changes and ecosystem destruction that will severely impact us all. Human action which is not respectful of nature becomes a boomerang for human beings that creates inequality and extends “the globalization of indifference” and the “economy of exclusion”, which themselves endanger solidarity with present and future generations.

    The advances in measured productivity in all sectors – agriculture, industry and services – enable us to envision the end of poverty, the sharing of prosperity, and the further extensions of life spans. However, unfair social structures have become obstacles to an appropriate and sustainable organization of production and a fair distribution of its fruits, which are both necessary to achieve those goals.

    Humanity’s relationship with nature is riddled with unaccounted for consequences of the actions each of us take for both present and future generations. Socio-environmental processes are not self-correcting. Market forces alone, bereft of ethics and collective action, cannot solve the intertwined crises of poverty, exclusion, and the environment.

    However, the failure of the market has been accompanied by the failure of institutions, which have not always aimed at the common good.Problems have been exacerbated by the fact that economic activity is currently measured solely in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and therefore does not record the degradation of Earth that accompanies it nor the abject inequalities between countries and within each country.

    The growth in GDP has been accompanied by unacceptable gaps between the rich and the poor, who still have no access to most of the advancement of the Era. For example, about fifty-percent of available energy is accessed by just one billion people, yet the negative impacts on the environment are being felt by the three billion who have no access to that energy.

    Three billion have so little access to modern energy that they are forced to cook, heat and light their homes with methods dangerous to their health.The massive fossil fuel use at the heart of the global energy system deeply disrupts the Earth’s climate and acidifies the world’s oceans. The warming and associated extreme weather will reach unprecedented levels in our children’s life times and 40% of the world’s poor, who have a minimal role in generating global pollution, are likely to suffer the most. Industrial-scale agricultural practices are transforming landscapes around the world, disrupting ecosystems and threatening the diversity and survival of species on a planetary scale.

    We have the innovative and technological capability to be good stewards of Creation. Humanity needs urgently to redirect our relationship with nature by adopting the Sustainable Development Goals so as to promote a sustainable pattern of economic development and social inclusion.

    Our message is one of urgent warning, for the dangers of the Anthropocene are real and the injustice of globalization of indifference is serious. Yet our message is also one of hope and joy. A healthier, safer, more just, more prosperous, and sustainable world is within reach. The believers among us ask the Lord to give us all our daily bread, which is food for the body and the spirit.

    tl;dr – the Pope is a clover asshole Ayn Rand villain of the worst sort, and has every confidence in a coming post fossil fuel age where the church again has the absolute ability and means to enslave everyone as much as it deems necessary to obtain world control over all the promised lands of the entire earth, amen.

    • Dear Tor,

      Re: the Pope

      He’s a classic case of what Rand called a “witch doctor.”

      She uses two terms to illustrate the most notorious individuals who have played a role in the history of philosophy: “Attila” and “Witch Doctor”.

      She categorizes various participants in human history, who have been a force for evil in her view, as being an “Attila” or “Witch Doctor”. An “Attila” is someone in history who used physical (“brute”) force to accomplish goals.

      A “Witch Doctor” is someone (often a philosopher, religious person, or other type of intellectual) who has used the written or spoken word to persuade people to go against their rational minds, often to the advantage of the “Attila” who is currently in power.

      A theocracy is essentially a melding of the two in one.

      • Dr. Attila forces you to take his socialized medicine, or else. He draws blood to ensure you’re taking his prescriptions for eternal war and wealth confiscation and redistribution.

        Prior to the industrial revolution, there are no professional intellectuals in primitive, savage societies, there are only witch doctors.

        There were no professional intellectuals in the Middle Ages, there were only monks in monasteries.

        In the post-Renaissance era, prior to the birth of capitalism, the men of the intellect—the philosophers, the teachers, the writers, the early scientists—were men without a profession, that is: without a socially recognized position, without a market, without a means of earning a livelihood.

        The professional businessman and the professional Intellectual came into existence together, as brothers born of the industrial revolution. Both are the sons of capitalism.

        Societies were formerly ruled by faith and its practical expression: force.

        There were no makers of knowledge and no makers of wealth; there were only witch doctors and tribal chiefs.

        These two figures dominate every anti-rational period of history, whether one calls them tribal chief and witch doctor—or absolute monarch and religious leader—or dictator and logical positivist.

        They are the actual rulers of most of mankind’s societies, who rise to power whenever men abandon reason. The essential characteristics of these two remain the same in all ages: Attila, the man who rules by brute force, acts on the range of the moment, is concerned with nothing but the physical reality immediately before him, respects nothing but man’s muscles, and regards a fist, a club or a gun as the only answer to any problem—and the Witch Doctor, the man who dreads physical reality, dreads the necessity of practical action, and escapes into his emotions, into visions of some mystic realm where his wishes enjoy a supernatural power unlimited by the absolute of nature.

        While animals survive by adjusting themselves to their background, man survives by adjusting his background to himself. If a drought strikes them, animals perish—man builds irrigation canals; if a flood strikes them, animals perish—man builds dams; if a carnivorous pack attacks them animals perish—man forms a neighborhood watch and a militia of preppers. One does not obtain food, safety or freedom—by instinct.

        It is against this faculty of reason, that Attila and the Witch Doctor rebel.

        The key to both their souls is their longing for the effortless, irresponsible, automatic consciousness of an animal.

        Both dread the necessity, the risk and the responsibility of rational cognition. Both dread the fact that “nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.” Both seek to exist, not by conquering nature, but by adjusting to the given, the immediate, the known. There is only one means of survival for those who do not choose to conquer nature: to conquer those who do.

        To the Witch Doctor, emotions are tools of cognition, and wishes take precedence over facts. He seeks to escape the risks of a quest for knowledge by obliterating the distinction between consciousness and reality, between the perceiver and the perceived, hoping that an automatic certainty and an infallible knowledge of the universe will be granted to him by the blind, unfocused stare of his eyes turned inward, contemplating the sensations, the feelings, the urgings, the muggy associational twistings projected by the rudderless mechanism of his undirected consciousness.

        The secret of the Witch Doctor’s power lies in the fact that man needs an integrated view of life, a philosophy, whether he is aware of his need or not—and whenever, through ignorance, cowardice or mental sloth, men choose not to be aware of it, their chronic sense of guilt, uncertainty and terror makes them feel that the Witch Doctor’s philosophy is true.

        The first to feel it is Attila.

        The man who lives by brute force, at the whim and mercy of the moment, lives on a narrow island suspended in a fog of the unknown, where invisible threats and unpredictable disasters can descend upon him any morning. He is willing to surrender his consciousness to the man who offers him protection against those intangible questions which he does not wish to consider, yet dreads.

        http://www.naturalthinker.net/trl/texts/Rand,Ayn/FortheNewIntellectual.htm

        Attila’s fear of reality is as great as the Witch Doctor’s. Both hold their consciousness on a subhuman level and method of functioning: Attila’s brain is a jumble of concretes unintegrated by abstractions; the Witch Doctor’s brain is a miasma of floating abstractions unrelated to concretes. Both are guided and motivated—ultimately—not by thoughts, but by feelings and whims. Both cling to their whims as to their only certainty. Both feel secretly inadequate to the task of dealing with existence.

    • “An economic system centered on the god of money needs to plunder nature to sustain the frenetic rhythm of consumption that is inherent to it.”
      Here is how I would begin my refutation of this claim –
      We do not have an economic system centered on the god of money. It is centered on choice, or, as Mises called it, “Human Action.”
      Now it seems to be true that certain “Powers That Be” are not interested in choice, or at least on the choices of anyone other than themselves. But the same could be said of the Pope. Or perhaps he even is one of “The Powers That Be.”
      Just because I call myself a follower of Christ, does not mean that I accept the authority of any man or branch of “the Church” over me.

  6. Some questions for Mole, Philip, and any other Christians who are essentially taking the “no Christian would ever become a pig” stance (note: I realize that this conversation is of utterly no interest to non-Christians, but its important to me, so bear with me please.)

    Say you have a Christian in rural China who knows the government is persecuting him but knows little else about the “anatomy of the state” and is pretty poorly educated in scripture, though he does understand the core of the gospel (Christ died to save him from his sins, he needs to believe in Christ alone to be saved, etc.) You ask him about whether he thinks taxation is theft. His response is “what? I’m not sure what you mean. How would that be theft?” Would you immediately judge that man as a non-Christian because “he said theft was OK?”

    Would we say that this man has more of an excuse for his ignorance than an American Christian who has been reading LewRockwell.com for months and scoffs at it? I know I would.

    Let’s say I (David), clover, and Mr. A, who is a random guy who barely knows who Ron Paul was and has never heard of philosophical anarchism/voluntarism, each decide to join our local police forces.

    I would say that I’m the most morally responsible. I know the voluntarist arguments and I accept them. Thus, to join the police would be to KNOWINGLY engage in a moral act, namely, to rob and kidnap my neighbors. Maybe I did it for social standing, maybe for the benefits, whatever. I KNOWINGLY walked into immoral action. I would freely agree with you guys that that would prove that I’m not a Christian unless I quickly repented.

    Clover would be of a somewhat lower moral responsibility than me, IMO, because he is aware of the libertarian arguments but rejects them. So, while he clearly SHOULD know what he is doing is wrong, and he HAS BEEN TOLD, he still thinks that he’s doing right. He (as far as we know) sincerely believes it. That sincere belief isn’t an excuse, but since he “doesn’t know” and does actions worthy of stripes, he is less culpable. And I’d say Mr. A is less culpable yet, since he’s never even heard the arguments. He’d be TOTALLY puzzled by what we’re discussing.

    Let me ask about one more example. I know MM has already said Rushdoony and North were among the good guys. Imagine a theonomist society in America. The laws aren’t quite libertarian like we’d like them to be, but they are a lot closer than they are today. We’d still agree that American police have no business enforcing homosexuality laws today, and that to do so isn’t their place. But, theonomists, according to their hermaneutic, would think this is completely appropriate. Would a Rushdoonyite security officer who enforced such a law be “among the bad guys” for doing that. And if so, why wasn’t Rushdoony himself one of the bad guys since he clearly endorsed such laws and would have had no moral problem with enforcing them himself?

    My own opinion is that our current society is far more evil than either a theonomist society or a constitutional minarchist society, by leaps and bounds. I’m willing to have a debate with Christians who would support and work toward/for those types of systems or similar. I would say that’s an “in house” debate even though I would say that those types of systems aren’t completely compatible with the NAP.

    But, our government today is so corrupt that I don’t really like leaving that as an open/in house debate in the same way. It boggles my mind that people could really worship the State to such a great extent that they would endorse the State stealing someone’s property to build a highway, or even worse, stealing a kid because the parent engages in some controversial medical practice or something like that. Nor do I see how a Christian cop could have a clean conscience enforcing the myriad of arbitrary rules that the US has today. In theory I do think it would be appropriate to educate such people about what’s going on, give them a few weeks to think about it, and then tell them you can’t really fellowship with them if they keep doing it. I’d like to be in a position where I could do this. But in reality, you are supposed to go to the church before you do that, and the church will not excommunicate such people. So in reality, I’m not certain what is to be done. Nor am I certain what would be the right thing to do if the church as a whole were brainwashed into thinking homosexuality was fine and churches would not only not excommunicate unrepentant homos, but would border on wanting to excommunicate people who dared to say homos should be excommunicated.

    This whole issue dumbfounds me in so many different ways. I don’t even think I have the words to describe it.

    • It’s easy enough to understand, David, once you grasp that most people are not fully conscious in the sense that their minds have been molded from childhood on by this system to never think in terms of concept and principles. The proverbial light never goes on that you and I and others here now take for granted, which causes us to automatically consider any particular thing on a conceptual level. Thus, our minds subsume all forms of theft under the same conceptual category – whereas to the average person, there is stealing someone’s wallet (one thing) and “taxation” (another thing, a different thing… somehow). The latter made possible by a very cleverly engineered process of (as Orwell described it) doublethink, the ability to hold two contradictory ideas simultaneously while believing each to be true. Thus, Clover probably would feel guilty about taking someone’s wallet (theft) but will aggressively demand the same thing be done via other means, which he regards as somehow fundamentally different.

      This is all very deliberate and has been unfolding for generations. Read Gatto. The specific, intended purpose of the Prussian model government/state school was (and is) to prevent the mass man from ever thinking by crippling his capacity to think. Instead, he is “socialized” – methodically turned into a docile, herd animal who knows (in an animal-like way) what is expected of him and goes through life doing exactly that. Each person fundamentally the same; any real individuality tamped down and replaced with superficialities such as style of clothes, veneration of this rather than that team – and so on. Never rocking the boat. George Carlin’s obedient workers. That’s what’s desired.

      And which has been achieved.

      • @Eric- Yeah, that part is simple enough. A lot of what I’m asking about is theologicial, which is why I asked Mole and Philip. I understand that the theological angle isn’t important to you, but it is to me. I’m not trying to convince you that it should be important to you, just that it is important to me.

        Forgive me for linking a theology forum, but I think this thread I was participating in on one really illustrates the point you are making right here Eric. Notice the argument I’ve been having with “Granite” and some others on this thread, starting on page 23 :

        http://www.theologyonline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=106409&page=23

        (I am “Christian Liberty” if you didn’t figure it out on your own.)

        Notice the euphemisms all the “clovers” use vs the accurate terminology that I use.

  7. Eric you sure nailed that,there are some things you cannot attone for,but I suppose thats why we have due process,to make sure it was accidental and not intentional,I do like the idea of banishment,of an isolated place were the Murderers,rapists ,child molesters and the ilk could be placed permanently,by all means get the nonviolent ones who have never harmed anyone out of that waiting room for Hell called prison.Its a strange that in this free country,we have a greater percentage of our population incarcerated,then any other civilized nation on earth(got to quit now,computer is dying)-Kevin

  8. Eric said: “

    Is this not a variation of the “implied consent” doctrine that statists use to justify all sorts of authoritarian abuse?

    Do you mean to claim that every Israelite freely entered into a contract with god? Actually sat down with him and said, ok, I accept?

    Or is it more accurate to say that priests claimed sovereignty over all the people under their control and that they were the righteous conduit of god’s will … and that they had better be obeyed (or else)?”

    No, Eric- not quite like Cloverism- although I could see where you’d get that idea.

    Ancient Israel was more like a libertarian monarchy. The land was given to them by God (After they broke His covenant, they were kicked out; and now, at the end of time, some atheistic Jews under the auspices of the UN have taken it upon themselves to reclaim that land- but look at the results! -but that’s another story….]

    Anywho, living under a very few laws- many of which were in agreement with the NAP, in a land that was given to you, is not quite the same as doing everything that you are told to do by men in a land which you legally acquired [weren’t given] and which is neither supposed to be a theocracy nor monarchy.

    And even Ancient Israel did not become a theocracy until the PEOPLE demanded a king- “to be like the nations”- which was a rejection of the largely libertarian system established by God.

    And it was not exactly ruled by priests- It was administered by those priests- but only as detailed by the laws of that covenant- just like our country was only supposed to be administered by the terms of our constitution.

    Much like when I take up residence in a different country, I will be obligated to abide by their system of law. So I will choose a country that has the least intrusive laws. Pretty much as was the case in the time of ancient Israel.

    That was just one small nation. Just think: God has allowed the majority of the world to do as they please, for the majority of it’s history (And the results have not been so great); The laws of God which actually required any human intervention/punishment, even in Israel, were quite few- and even mosyt libertarians would agree with many of those.

    I’d gladly live under that system of law, than any system that has ever existed on this earth. Basically, under any form of government, you either like it or leave- but the thing is, with God’s government, you could leave; you didn’t have to go to begin with; and the rest iof the world was your oyster- unlike today, where it’s the same “Like it or leave” mentality- but there is nowhere to go; the laws are not very libertarian; and the laws cover every aspect of one’s life, instead of just a few major crimes.

    There were no prisons in ancient Israel.

    You really can’t have any form of government except pure anarchy, without some sort of “like it or leave” paradigm- even under the most libertarian system, violators of the NAP would be in the same position- and we might or might not object to that, depending on who defined the NAP- i.e. look at the “Free State” movement in NH- where their platform still wants to have authority over one’s kids, to force them to be seatbelted. That is something I would not want to agree to; or suppose they defined the NAP to include the spanking of children as being a violation?

    No matter what you believe- it all comes down to either being in community with those who hold similar values to yours- or to pure anarchy. Either of those would be acceptable to me- but our present system of tyranny is not. Nor is it authorized by God.

    It’s funny- but, even when God will be ruling this earth in the future, He is not going to rule it like a tyrant- notice Zech. 14:4 -where it says that if Egypt doesn’t keep the Feast Of Tabernacles [Will they be slaughtered? Imprisoned? No….] they will not receive the blessing of rain.

    There is nothing wrong, when one lives in God’s world, to obey God. Just as if you live in some monarchy, and are granted land there by the king, you’d naturally abide by the King’s laws. The problem only comes when men take it upon themselves to be the “representatives of God”, and proceed to impose laws on their fellow men which God never authorized them to- or which are even in opposition to God’s laws.

    I’m a libertarian/anarchist because i believe that we should all be free to live our consciences before God- as God Himself has ordained, by the fact that He is not ruling this earth- and unlike the Moslems, He has nowhere commanded His followers to impose His laws on the world- but rather, to just obey them, themselves.

    And no offense taken. Nothing wrong with confronting fundamental issues- and even expressing opposition to them if that’s what you believe. I’m glad to have the opportunity to discuss such things.

    (I’m slowly going through literally hundreds of email notifications from this thread….so this may stay alive for quite some time… Sheesh- I haven’t even looked at the Lew Rockwell site in over a week!)

    • Gee Moleman,
      Remember when you first came on this site, and you were wondering if you’d be better off moving to Uruguay?

      It’s certainly a good place to consider.

      I’ve been hearing good things about Ecuador lately, too. Me and the wife already have our place in Mexico picked out. Ecuador is supposed to be the best. Mexico is supposed to be third best, according to this article. I prefer to stick to places I’m familiar with, myself.

      Wherever possible, I already frequent places where spanish is spoken. It’s a lot harder to impose your authoritarian will on one another, when there’s a language barrier, I’ve found.

      I think I’ve had more than my fill of die-electic English conversations, especially since they often devolve into circles around the same eternal roundabouts, sooner or later. It’s almost like the language works against me, it encourages me to push other people’s buttons and then get bogged down in unresolvable false dilemmas.

      Re: are you christian or atheist. How about “no, I’m not.” There are thousands of other things I might be, in my mind at least, this is a false dilemma and I don’t want to glove up and fight what I consider a cartoon battle.

      Non-aggression and non-association go hand in hand. You don’t owe me an explanation on anything. I don’t owe you anything. Eazy peazy. You’ve written all kinds of amazing things here, and I hope to continue enjoying them.

      I don’t lump you in with any others on this site, because that’s not how voluntaryism is supposed to work. (sometimes I forget this tho) You and me are both Americans, but that certainly doesn’t mean we must defend each other, were an Australian try to lump us together and attack us at identical American Scum. We would both laugh at anyone who tried that, wouldn’t we. I also won’t lump you in with anyone here who shares similar beliefs with you. Because, you’re you, they’re somebody else, eazy peazy.

      Perhaps your justifications for your beliefs have fallen short of other’s expectations. I do think you made a good solid effort as best you were able. Which is more than sufficient I’d say. At the end of the day, they’re your beliefs, right?

      Anyway here’s the article:

      Best Places to Retire Abroad In 2015

    • The Israelites did not give ‘implied consent.’ They gave actual consent by traveling through the wilderness rather than returning to slavery in Egypt – Though they did consider that at one point.

  9. Eric said “

    You’re absolutely right. The core problem is the state defining marriage – and issuing “permission” (and privileges).

    Such things are no business of government, because they are no one else’s business. If two people are of a certain faith, then they have every right to be married within the context of their faith – and outsiders have no right whatsoever to define/alter the “terms and conditions.” It’s a private contract.

    Right-on, Eric! At some point in the past, contract law was what our courts were mainly about. As they gradually took it upon themselves to decide which contracts/what parts of contracts were enforceable- as opposed to just seeing that the parties complied with the terms they agreed to- they essentially became the be-all and end-all legislators of every matter, and made our contracts inferior to their so-called laws. And of course, people just unquestioningly went along with it- to the point where no one even questions “Why do a need a license from the state to get married?”

    The really sad thing is, rather than the issue of faggot marriage acting to diminish the power the government has over the institution, it is instead bequeathing even more power and authority to the government, by now allowing them to actually define marriage; and increasing the pool of people who will be subject to the family courts over issues concerning their private matters.

    Yes, the problem is always the gov’t; but it is amazing how that problem is often initiated at the request of people thinking that they are getting a solution rather than a problem.

    • Thanks, Mole!

      It’s really important for us to hammer away at the real problem (the state; that is, other people presuming to lord it over other people). What consenting adults do is their business alone, unless what they do can be shown to have caused a tangible harm to non-consenting third parties. As a legal matter, any two (or three) consenting adults have a right to enter into a contract and (as a for instance) agree to joint ownership of property, power-of-attorney and so on. Man and woman, or man and man or whatever.

      The only basis for legitimate grousing is when the state confers certain privileges on some people while denying them to others – including the highly obnoxious business of decreeing which religious ceremonies/rights are “acceptable” and under what terms and conditions.

      Religious affiliation is a matter of personal conscience and personal choice and as much anyone else’s business as whom one sleeps with.

  10. Eric sdaid “

    Because “back then” it was ok. The Israelites were “covenanted” and God’s rules for them were different. If god says it’s ok to stone people to death, then it is. But god has changed his covenant and he doesn’t demand that people be stoned to death today. “

    Eric, the covenant hasn’t changed- just the administration of it, because there is currently no community of God’s people- as salvation has been offered to the world at-large on an individual basis, instead of through one nation- as that nation broke God’s covenant.

    God is very libertarian- essentially just letting us be; until and if we believe.

    Man, on the other hand, is not so libertarian- and has often used the pretext of representing God, as justification for various atrocities; and just as the Jews broke God’s covenant and rejected the Messiah, so do most professing Chrisitians today- so please do not look upon mainstream Christian thought as representing the actual Biblical ideas.

    • ” so please do not look upon mainstream Christian thought as representing the actual Biblical ideas.”
      I strongly second that request.

      • I’m going to third that request. Mole and Philip are probably more logically consistent than I am right now. I am still working on it. But I am absolutely certain that I am not, and will never be, in the mainstream.

  11. Me2 said:

    Indeed. I am positive that David has not accepted anything written here unless it was already his belief. He knows the truth and no fact could convince him otherwise. No inconsistency or contradiction cannot be rationalized by his faith.

    I have stated here before that once ‘because god’ is part of the conversation, rational debate is impossible. David was kind enouh to provide the example for us today.

    This, from a man who accepts a mere theory of life and origins, which must rely upon “an unseen force”; “nature”; etc.

    I’ve found over the years, that it is often those who demand adherence to “science”, who are the first ones to rely upon/bring up religion- for theories are often nothing more than a competing religion.

    What do they say about those who live in glass houses?

    • Hi Moleman you lying sack of excrement.

      Show me where I indicated this “This, from a man who accepts a mere theory of life and origins, which must rely upon “an unseen force”; “nature”; etc.

      I specifically replied the last time you tried tho claim this crap. Just how dishonest are you?
      See here, December 29, 2014 at 7:11 pm

      • It is becoming very clear that Bert was right,

        “A stupid man’s report of what a clever man says can never be accurate, because he unconsciously translates what he hears into something he can understand.” – Bertrand Russell

        You are in serious trouble Mole. I’m not even that clever.

        So, next time you claim I have said something, show the quote and show that you actually understand what the words mean.

        Nothing is as pathetic as a weak minded fool lying to support his own delusions of understanding. You are very pathetic.

  12. Wow,this discussion sure was longwinded-reminds me of a Chap,I met in the “Big House”(I believe He was an English Professor) He related to me the breakdown of Frontier life in the Old West,when some Folks became wealthy enough to engage the services of a bully with a gun ,called a Sheriff.
    I dont necessarily trust the judgement of these so called peace officers,because of the inevitable conflicts of interest.
    Anyway does anybody see anything wrong,with action of the Heros,killing that man they provoked,because He said some threatning things? For Petes sake,words are words.
    As a worshipper of the God oif the Hebrews,several things bother Me nowadays,not in the least is the hypocrisey,that is rampant now-Kevin

  13. Twelve Aspects of Rationality

    The first is curiosity. A burning itch to know is higher than a solemn vow to pursue truth. To feel the burning itch of curiosity requires both that you be ignorant, and that you desire to relinquish your ignorance.

    If in your heart you believe you already know, or if in your heart you do not wish to know, then your questioning will be purposeless and your skills without direction. Curiosity seeks to annihilate itself; there is no curiosity that does not want an answer.

    The glory of glorious mystery is to be solved, after which it ceases to be mystery. Be wary of those who speak of being open-minded and modestly confess their ignorance. There is a time to confess your ignorance and a time to relinquish your ignorance.

    The second is relinquishment. That which can be destroyed by the truth should be. Do not flinch from experiences that might destroy your beliefs. The thought you cannot think controls you more than thoughts you speak aloud.

    Submit yourself to ordeals and test yourself in fire. Relinquish the emotion which rests upon a mistaken belief, and seek to feel fully that emotion which fits the facts. If the iron approaches your face, and you believe it is hot, and it is cool, the Way opposes your fear.

    If the iron approaches your face, and you believe it is cool, and it is hot, the Way opposes your calm. Evaluate your beliefs first and then arrive at your emotions. Let yourself say: “If the iron is hot, I desire to believe it is hot, and if it is cool, I desire to believe it is cool.” Beware lest you become attached to beliefs you may not want.

    The third is lightness. Let the winds of evidence blow you about as though you are a leaf, with no direction of your own. Beware lest you fight a rearguard retreat against the evidence, grudgingly conceding each foot of ground only when forced, feeling cheated.

    Surrender to the truth as quickly as you can. Do this the instant you realize what you are resisting; the instant you can see from which quarter the winds of evidence are blowing against you. Be faithless to your cause and betray it to a stronger enemy.

    If you regard evidence as a constraint and seek to free yourself, you sell yourself into the chains of your whims. For you cannot make a true map of a city by sitting in your bedroom with your eyes shut and drawing lines upon paper according to impulse.

    You must walk through the city and draw lines on paper that correspond to what you see. If, seeing the city unclearly, you think that you can shift a line just a little to the right, just a little to the left, according to your caprice, this is just the same mistake.

    The fourth is evenness. One who wishes to believe says, “Does the evidence permit me to believe?” One who wishes to disbelieve asks, “Does the evidence force me to believe?” Beware lest you place huge burdens of proof only on propositions you dislike, and then defend yourself by saying: “But it is good to be skeptical.”

    If you attend only to favorable evidence, picking and choosing from your gathered data, then the more data you gather, the less you know. If you are selective about which arguments you inspect for flaws, or how hard you inspect for flaws, then every flaw you learn how to detect makes you that much stupider.

    If you first write at the bottom of a sheet of paper, “And therefore, the sky is green!”, it does not matter what arguments you write above it afterward; the conclusion is already written, and it is already correct or already wrong. To be clever in argument is not rationality but rationalization.

    Intelligence, to be useful, must be used for something other than defeating itself. Listen to hypotheses as they plead their cases before you, but remember that you are not a hypothesis, you are the judge. Therefore do not seek to argue for one side or another, for if you knew your destination, you would already be there.

    The fifth is argument. Those who wish to fail must first prevent their friends from helping them. Those who smile wisely and say: “I will not argue” remove themselves from help, and withdraw from the communal effort. In argument strive for exact honesty, for the sake of others and also yourself: The part of yourself that distorts what you say to others also distorts your own thoughts.

    Do not believe you do others a favor if you accept their arguments; the favor is to you. Do not think that fairness to all sides means balancing yourself evenly between positions; truth is not handed out in equal portions before the start of a debate. You cannot move forward on factual questions by fighting with fists or insults. Seek a test that lets reality judge between you.

    The sixth is empiricism. The roots of knowledge are in observation and its fruit is prediction. What tree grows without roots? What tree nourishes us without fruit? If a tree falls in a forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound? One says, “Yes it does, for it makes vibrations in the air.” Another says, “No it does not, for there is no auditory processing in any brain.”

    Though they argue, one saying “Yes”, and one saying “No”, the two do not anticipate any different experience of the forest. Do not ask which beliefs to profess, but which experiences to anticipate. Always know which difference of experience you argue about. Do not let the argument wander and become about something else, such as someone’s virtue as a rationalist.

    What does you in is not failure to apply some high-level, intricate, complicated technique. It’s overlooking the basics. Not keeping your eye on the ball. Do not be blinded by words. When words are subtracted, anticipation remains.

    The seventh is simplicity. Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. Simplicity is virtuous in belief, design, planning, and justification. When you profess a huge belief with many details, each additional detail is another chance for the belief to be wrong.

    Each specification adds to your burden; if you can lighten your burden you must do so. There is no straw that lacks the power to break your back. Of artifacts it is said: The most reliable gear is the one that is designed out of the machine. Of plans: A tangled web breaks.

    A chain of a thousand links will arrive at a correct conclusion if every step is correct, but if one step is wrong it may carry you anywhere. In mathematics a mountain of good deeds cannot atone for a single sin. Therefore, be careful on every step.

    The eighth is humility. To be humble is to take specific actions in anticipation of your own errors. To confess your fallibility and then do nothing about it is not humble; it is boasting of your modesty.

    Who are most humble? Those who most skillfully prepare for the deepest and most catastrophic errors in their own beliefs and plans. Because this world contains many whose grasp of rationality is abysmal, beginning students of rationality win arguments and acquire an exaggerated view of their own abilities.

    But it is useless to be superior: Life is not graded on a curve. The best physicist in ancient Greece could not calculate the path of a falling apple. There is no guarantee that adequacy is possible given your hardest effort; therefore spare no thought for whether others are doing worse. If you compare yourself to others you will not see the biases that all humans share. To be human is to make ten thousand errors. No one in this world achieves perfection.

    The ninth is perfectionism. The more errors you correct in yourself, the more you notice. As your mind becomes more silent, you hear more noise. When you notice an error in yourself, this signals your readiness to seek advancement to the next level. If you tolerate the error rather than correcting it, you will not advance to the next level and you will not gain the skill to notice new errors.

    In every art, if you do not seek perfection you will halt before taking your first steps. If perfection is impossible that is no excuse for not trying. Hold yourself to the highest standard you can imagine, and look for one still higher. Do not be content with the answer that is almost right; seek one that is exactly right.

    The tenth is precision. One says: The quantity is between 1 and 100. Another says: the quantity is between 40 and 50. If the quantity is 42 they are both correct, but the second prediction was more useful and exposed itself to a stricter test.

    What is true of one apple may not be true of another apple; thus more can be said about a single apple than about all the apples in the world. The narrowest statements slice deepest, the cutting edge of the blade. As with the map, so too with the art of mapmaking: The Way is a precise Art. Do not walk to the truth, but dance. On each and every step of that dance your foot comes down in exactly the right spot.

    Each piece of evidence shifts your beliefs by exactly the right amount, neither more nor less. What is exactly the right amount? To calculate this you must study probability theory. Even if you cannot do the math, knowing that the math exists tells you that the dance step is precise and has no room in it for your whims.

    The eleventh is scholarship. Study many sciences and absorb their power as your own. Each field that you consume makes you larger. If you swallow enough sciences the gaps between them will diminish and your knowledge will become a unified whole.

    If you are gluttonous you will become vaster than mountains. It is especially important to eat math and science which impinges upon rationality: Evolutionary psychology, heuristics and biases, social psychology, probability theory, decision theory. But these cannot be the only fields you study. The Art must have a purpose other than itself, or it collapses into infinite recursion.

    The twelfth is intention. The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your intention to cut the enemy, whatever the means. Whenever you parry, hit, spring, strike or touch the enemy’s cutting sword, you must cut the enemy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able actually to cut him. More than anything, you must be thinking of carrying your movement through to cutting him.

    Every step of your reasoning must cut through to the correct answer in the same movement. More than anything, you must think of carrying your map through to reflecting the territory. If you fail to achieve a correct answer, it is futile to protest that you acted with propriety.

    How can you improve your conception of rationality? Not by saying to yourself, “It is my duty to be rational.” By this you only enshrine your mistaken conception. Perhaps your conception of rationality is that it is rational to believe the words of the Great Teacher, and the Great Teacher says, “The sky is green,” and you look up at the sky and see blue. If you think: “It may look like the sky is blue, but rationality is to believe the words of the Great Teacher,” you lose a chance to discover your mistake. Do not ask whether it is “the Way” to do this or that. Ask whether the sky is blue or green. If you speak overmuch of the Way you will not attain it.

    You may try to name the highest principle with names such as “the map that reflects the territory” or “experience of success and failure” or “Bayesian decision theory”. But perhaps you describe incorrectly the nameless virtue. How will you discover your mistake? Not by comparing your description to itself, but by comparing it to that which you did not name.

    If for many years you practice the aspects and techniques. And submit yourself to strict constraints, it may be that you will glimpse the center. Then you will see how all techniques are one technique, and you will move correctly without feeling constrained. When you appreciate the power of nature, knowing the rhythm of any situation, you will be able to hit the enemy naturally and strike naturally. All this is intention and the Way of the Void.

    These then are twelve aspects of rationality:

    Curiosity, relinquishment, lightness, evenness, argument, empiricism, simplicity, humility, perfectionism, precision, scholarship, and intention.

  14. Name of person I am responding to: your writing shows us that you have zero common sense. You libertarians just want everyone to die so you can have our roads all to yourself and not have to pay taxes for them. Repeating name again, If I was as stupid as you are, I would make a living writing the stupid things you write. Repeating name for a third time, if you hate our country so much, why don’t you move somewhere else where you can do the stupid things you want to do.

    Clover algorithm alpha.

  15. Rational thinkers have nothing against any particular deity – any more than a mathematician dislikes in particular the proposition that two and two make five. If such a mathematician existed, and loudly proclaimed his opposition to that particular equation, and founded a society called “against two and two making five,” he would be considered to have utterly failed to grasp the most basic principles of mathematics.

    A thinker cannot logically differentiate the nonexistence of a deity from the nonexistence of any other thing which does not exist. Principles by definition apply in general, rather than in particular, just as a method of long division cannot only apply to one particular combination of numbers.

    The criteria for existence versus nonexistence is a general standard, which applies equally to rocks, electricity, electrons, ghosts, dreams, square circles, concepts and unicorns. It cannot rationally focus its energies on only one entity – or even one category – otherwise it becomes mere prejudice, rather than the dispassionate application of a general principle.

    Defining “atheism” as being “against the gods” is thus a misnomer, since it takes a merely accidental subset of a larger set of principles and turns it into an arbitrary principle itself. There is no such thing as being “against the existence of gods,” any more than there is such a thing as being “anti-leprechaun.”

    In fact, to say that you are against one leprechaun in particular is to imply that you believe in leprechauns overall, but find one of them in particular somehow offensive.

    We cannot rationally be “against gods,” just as we cannot be “against” square circles, or offended by the idea that human beings can live unaided on the surface of the sun. These propositions are simply false, according to reason and evidence, and to create a second category of particular offense “against the gods” is irrational.

    Rational thinkers accept standards of existence that involve logical consistency – and with any luck, empirical evidence. It is the first standard that beliefs in gods fail and – as a result, there is little point looking for the second.

    The word “atheist” also indicates that belief in gods is the standard, and atheism is the exception – just as “sane” is the standard, and “insane” is the exception.

    This is sophistic propaganda, since all theists are almost complete atheists, in that they do not believe in the vast majority of man’s gods. The rejection of gods is the default position; the acceptance of a deity remains extremely rare, though not as rare as atheists would like.

    Against the Gods – S. Molyneux

    Two main errors are generally made when examining the existence of gods.

    The first is to ignore the basic fact that gods cannot logically exist, and the second is to accept such logical impossibilities, but to create some imaginary realm where gods may exist. Broadly speaking, the first error is made by theists, who argue that gods do exist, and the second by agnostics, who argue that they may exist.

    In the first instance, gods are viewed as similar to unicorns. If we define a unicorn as a horse with a horn on its head, we cannot logically say that such a creature can never exist. There may be such a being on some other planet, or in some undiscovered place in this world, or perhaps a mutation may arise at some point in the future which pushes a horn out of the forehead of a standard-issue horse.

    The concept of a horse with a horn on its head is not logically self-contradictory – and thus such a being may exist, and it would be foolish to state otherwise.

    In the same way, life forms based on silicon rather than carbon may exist somewhere in the universe – such beings are not logically self-contradictory, and so their existence cannot be rationally eliminated.

    However, if I define a unicorn as a horse with a horn on its head that can fly through interstellar space, go backwards through time powered by its magical rainbow tail, and which existed prior to the universe – well, then we have moved into another category of assertion entirely.

    A horse cannot live in space, since there is no oxygen, or air pressure, or water – and about a thousand other reasons. The properties and necessities of carbon-based life forms completely eliminate such a possibility.

    A being which does not contradict the properties of existence may exist – a proposed being which does, may not. Gods are entirely self-contradictory entities, the supernatural equivalent of square circles. We do not have to hunt the entire universe to know that a square circle cannot exist, because it is a self-contradictory concept. We do not have to examine every rock on every planet to know that a rock cannot fall up and down at the same time. We do not have to count every object in the universe to know that two and two make four, not five.

    There is no possibility that self-contradictory entities can exist anywhere in the universe. We know that an object cannot be a teacup and an armchair and a horse with a horn at the same time. The Aristotelian laws of identity and non-contradiction deny us the luxury of believing that self-contradictory entities exist anywhere except in our own unreliable imaginations.

    The theist response – it is impossible to use the word ‘answer’ – is to place their god “outside of time,” but this is pure nonsense. When an entity is proven to be self-contradictory, creating a realm wherein self-contradictions are valid does not solve the problem.

    If you tell me that a square circle cannot exist, and I then create an imaginary realm called “square circles can exist,” we are not at an impasse; I have just abandoned reality, rationality and quite possibly my sanity.

    Theists who try this particular con should at least be consistent, and not pay their taxes, and then, when said taxes are demanded, say to the tax collector that they have created a universe called “I paid my taxes,” and slam the door in his face.

    Another objection to the existence of deities is that an object can only rationally be defined as existing when it can be detected in some manner, either directly, in the form of matter and/or energy, or indirectly, based upon its effects on the objects around it, such as a black hole.

    That which can be detected is that which exists, as anyone who has tried walking through a glass door can painfully tell you. Such a door is deemed to be open – or nonexistent – when we can walk through it without detecting the glass with our soon-to-be-bloody nose.

    It would be epistemological madness to argue that an open door is synonymous with a closed door. If someone argues that existence is equal to nonexistence, challenge them to walk through a wall rather than an archway. (The fact that the wall might be an archway in another dimension will scarcely help their passage in this one.)

    A god – or at least any god that has been historically proposed or accepted – is that which cannot be detected by any material means, either directly or indirectly.
    Ah, but what about the future? Might we find gods orbiting Betelgeuse in the 25th century? Well, while it is true that at some point we may come across some seemingly magical being somewhere in the universe that may appear somewhat godlike to us, no one who has proposed the existence of gods in the past has ever met such a being, which we can tell because no test for existence has ever been proposed or accepted.

    Since “god” means “that which is undetectable, either directly or indirectly,” then the statement “gods exist” rationally breaks down to:

    “That which does not exist, exists.”

    Thus not only is the concept of gods entirely self-contradictory, but even the proposition that they exist is self-contradictory.

    Theists claim that gods exist, atheists accept that they do not; agnostics say that gods are unlikely, but not impossible.

    How do they manage this?

    Many agnostics understand that gods do not – and cannot – exist in physical reality, so they create “Dimension X,” and place the possibility of gods existing somewhere “out there.” Inevitably, when a rational thinker points out that this does not solve the problem, the agnostic replies with grating haughtiness that the rational thinker is being closed-minded, and sniffs that to claim the nonexistence of any particular entity is short-sighted and unimaginative.

    “Surely,” he says, “if you were to tell a medieval man that human beings would one day be able to talk instantaneously around the world, he would say that such a feat was utterly impossible – but he would be only exposing the limitations of his more primitive mind, not making any objective truth statement.”

    In other words, any and all certainty is primitive superstition.

    This wonderful piece of sophistry is a patently ridiculous form of ad hominem, which goes something like this: “Just as Newtonian physics gave way to Einsteinian physics, and Einsteinian physics was in some ways surpassed by quantum mechanics, making absolute truth statements about all forms of future knowledge shows a deep ignorance of the flexible and progressive nature of the scientific method, and the endless potential for human thought.”

    This is a very strange notion, in which the scientific method is used to pave the way not away from ghosts, demons and a generally haunted universe, but rather towards it.

    The science of medicine has attempted to escape the primitive foolishness of witch doctors and the superstitions of demonic possession – to say that true medicine leads us towards such primitive fantasies, rather than helping us escape them, entirely misunderstands the purpose of science, reason and medicine.

    Of course it is true that Newtonian physics gave way to Einsteinian physics, and Einsteinian physics may well be surpassed by some other approach – to say so is boringly obvious.

    However, reason and evidence is a process, it is not any specific content. Science is a method, not a specific theory or proposition. It is only reason and evidence that reveals the superiority of more accurate and comprehensive theories. The scientific method rejects self-contradictory theories as either erroneous or inconclusive, just as mathematics rejects the results of any equation that starts with the proposition that two and two make five.

    Science has been man’s most successful attempt to flee what Carl Sagan called “the demon haunted world” – science cannot be used to pave the way back to such primitive madness.

    I suppose we can accept it as a compliment to science that agnostics and theists are using it to attempt to resurrect the primitive fantasies inherited from the infancy of our species, but the powerful electricity of modern thought cannot be used to resurrect the Frankenstein of superstitious falsehoods.

    • Dear Tor,

      Correct!

      Many theists like to draw false equivalencies between theism and atheism. They like to claim that “Both theism and atheism are belief systems, therefore atheists also need to prove their case.”

      That of course is sheer nonsense, and easily illustrated by an analogy.

      Suppose Tom claims that “Unicorns exist.” If Tom wants to persuade Dick and Harry that “unicorns exist” he must offer proof. Tom stuck his neck out and made a claim. He must now back up that claim.

      Dick and Harry, by contrast, were silent. They said nothing. They made no claims. Therefore they are under no obligation to prove anything.

      The burden of proof is always on the person who made a claim, not on those who abstained from making any claims. The burden of proof is on Tom, who opened his mouth and asserted that, “Unicorns exist.”

      The same goes for anyone who says “God exists.” The burden of proof is on him, the speaker, and not the listener.

      Or as one wag put it, “If atheism is a religion, then NOT collecting stamps is a hobby.”

      • Of course you cannot prove a negative. It’s an impossibility.
        But atheism is a religion – claiming ‘there is no god’ is equivalent’ to setting yourself up as god.

        • Dear Phil,

          If I say to you “Grey aliens exist” I am obligated to show proof. The burden of proof is on me.

          I cannot say to you “Phil, you are obligated to prove that they DO NOT exist.” I made the claim. I must prove my case.

          Substitute unicorns, fairies, or gods and the argument is exactly the same.

          • Bevin – I was not claiming that I can prove the existence of God. I was agreeing with you, I thought, that the non-existence of God cannot be proven.
            I am free to claim the existence of God w/o proving it as long as I am not requiring you to believe it as well.

            • Dear Phil,

              A bit of clarification may be in order.

              I believe we are talking about two types of “obligation” to offer proof.

              One type of obligation is logical obligation. If one wishes to have a logical debate, one is “obligated” to prove one’s case.

              The other type of obligation is an ethical obligation. If one respects individual rights, one is “obligated” to leave others alone and not physically coerce them to agree.

              Obviously as libertarians, we are not talking about the second type of obligation.

              That is one point. Another point concerns “whether it is possible to prove that god cannot exist.” If I understood you correctly, you think it is impossible.

              If so, you are wrong. I can prove that god, as defined by Christian churches, cannot possibly exist. I can prove that because the way god is defined is self-contradictory.

              Since contradictions cannot exist, therefore god (as defined by the Catholic Church and many other churches) cannot possibly exist.

              • Bevin – You are correct that clarification is in order. When I say I believe in God, I am not trying to convince you to do so. If so, you would be correct that the burden of proof is on me. However, what I am doing when I write here that I believe in God is simply declaring my ‘worldview’ in order to give a frame of reference to my other statements. I do so in hope of simplifying understanding, but, as we have noticed, if our definitions do not agree, we will not understand each other.
                On the other hand, you claim you can disprove the existence of God based on church dogma. You may have disproved the existence of THAT god, but that is NOT the God I serve.

                • Dear Phil,

                  I don’t disagree with your last comment because it is worded in a way that safeguards against it being refuted.

                  Basically what you said was “If you can refute it, then it’s not my god.”

                  Well of course no one can say you are wrong if you simply say “That was never what I meant. So I’m not wrong.”

                  The point is you avoided saying what your god actually is. And guess what? You shouldn’t if all you want is to not lose an argument. Because once you do, you will invariably trip yourself up with contradictions.

                  Not through any fault of your own, but because “god” as usually defined in the Abrahamic religions is itself self-contradictory.

                  • Dear Phil,

                    Not really. I have no expectation that anything I say will “convert” you. I’m merely indulging in self-expression. Think dorm room “bull session” back in college.

                    I have my beliefs and enjoy expressing them, but that is not the same as feeling a compulsion to convert anyone.

                    I seldom if ever attempt to convert religionists. I will debate religionists, but not out of any desire to convert them. I debate them because I’m curious about how others think.

                    I am a long time philosophy wonk. I loaded up on philosophy courses in college. I continued my philosophical journey after graduating by reading scores of books on all the different schools of philosophy.

        • Hi Philip,

          Let’s be careful – and precise – with our words.

          Rather than “there is no god” how about “I have yet to see objective proof that this asserted being – the Christian god – exists.” Assertions, yes. Ardent (and genuinely felt) expressions of belief, yes. But these are not proof of anything – other than that the person so asserting believes. However, I am not obligated to accept these assertions, to share these beliefs.

          And that is not a religious position.

          • There is a common thread I believe.

            Clover concludes you are pro-danger and anti-safety. He is certain that without government omnipotence, you will wreak havoc on roads, hospitals, food quality, and all other things he relies on while nestled in his Veal Pen.

            Theists conclude you are pro-lawelessness and anti-morality. They are certain without religious institutional omnipotence, you will wreak havoc on families, unborn children, property, and all other things they rely on while grazing on their Promised Lands.

            Clovers and Theists are equally wrong. It is unethical and immoral for either of them to force you to fund their preferred systems against your will. They are both equally strong arm robbers by proxy.

            The point isn’t which group is more intelligent or more logical than the other. The point is both the Clover and Theist groups are actively predating on you. They are apex predator omnivores with no natural enemies.

            For us, the state is the enemy.

            For Clovers and Theists, the state is someone to accept as is. Or at most, to muse about improving, while never for a second considering loosening their vulcan death grips on the reigns of the power of the pack.

          • Eric – I guess we have a problem of semantics. In my understanding, atheism is the assertion that God does not exist. This is every bit as religious claim as is the existence of God.
            “I have yet to see objective proof that this asserted being – the Christian god – exists.” This is an agnostic position, not an atheist one, in my understanding.

            • Hi Phillip,

              It can certainly be taken that way, but I take it as:

              Not accepting as fact that the Christian God (or any other god) exists; that these are fundamentally asserted claims only and of a piece with other such (e.g., gray aliens exist).

              Perhaps. Possibly.

              But it’s not religious to decline to accept such as true!

              • Agreed Eric – in my terminology (i.e., as I understand it) you would be considered an agnostic, not an atheist.
                At least we agree that our common enemies are: TPTB and Clovers subservient to the same.

            • PtB, here’s a bit from American Atheist:

              About American Atheists

              Since 1963, American Atheists has been the premier organization fighting for the civil liberties of atheists and the total, absolute separation of government and religion. American Atheists was born out of a court case begun in 1959 by the Murray family which challenged prayer recitation in the public schools.

              That case, Murray v. Curlett, was a landmark in American jurisprudence on behalf of our First Amendment rights. It began:

              “Your petitioners are atheists, and they define their lifestyle as follows. An atheist loves himself and his fellow man instead of a god. An atheist accepts that heaven is something for which we should work now – here on earth – for all men together to enjoy. An atheist accepts that he can get no help through prayer, but that he must find in himself the inner conviction and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it and to enjoy it. An atheist accepts that only in a knowledge of himself and a knowledge of his fellow man can he find the understanding that will help lead to a life of fulfillment.”

              Now in its 51st year, American Atheists is dedicated to working for the civil rights of atheists, promoting separation of state and church, and providing information about atheism. Over the last fifty years, American Atheists has:

              Fought fervently to defend the separation of religion from government
              Appeared in all forms of media to defend our positions and criticisms of religion and mythology
              Held atheist conventions and gatherings throughout the United States, including “Atheist Pride” marches in state capitals
              Demonstrated and picketed throughout the country on behalf of atheist rights and state/church separation
              Published hundreds of books about atheism, criticism of religion, and state/church separation
              Published newsletters, magazines, and member alerts
              Built a robust and diverse community of local affiliates, partners, and activists
              Fostered a growing network of representatives throughout the nation who monitor important First Amendment issues and work on behalf of the organization in their areas
              Grown a network of volunteers who perform a variety of important tasks in their community, from placing American Atheist books in libraries to writing letters and publicizing the atheist perspective
              Preserved atheist literature and history in the nation’s largest archive of its kind. The library’s holdings span over three hundred years of atheist thought.
              Provided speakers for colleges, universities, clubs, and the news media
              Granted college scholarships to young atheist activists

              About Us

              History of American Atheists
              Aims and Purposes
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      • Well put, Bevin. I agree with you fully. In this forum, that is the definition of atheism. Here we can defend ourselves.

        But we inhabit a majority irrational world. And we are in a powerless minority. So much so, that it is pretended there is no such group of people that simply don’t want to participate in the hobby of theism. In the 54 muslim majority theist countries, we are a minority who would be swiftly murdered by the pack for declaring such things.

        This will gain kudos here from those capable of appreciating it. But this will likely get you nowhere with theists The metaphysically illiterate thugs of theism. For they are still joyous clingers to mankind’s pack hunting roots. Homo Ecumenicus is a war tribe of allied mystics of spirit and mystics of muscle who efficiently cull from their ranks all manner of unbelievers.

        Theists are not making claims. They are forcefully asserting their alpha-pack animal dominance over the world. If you are not with these fascists then you must be a godless atheist communist. They will not tolerate your attempts at individuation. They will persist in dismissively target you as being one of the 1.4 billion chinese communist atheists that they are in a holy war against.

        Witness their work at wikipedia:

        “Theists affirm that a perfectly conscious understanding being, or mind, existing of itself from eternity, was the cause of all other things.

        Atheism is rejection of theism in the broadest sense of theism; i.e. the rejection of belief that there is even one deity. Rejection of the narrower sense of theism can take forms such as deism, pantheism, and polytheism. The claim that the existence of any deity is unknown or unknowable is agnosticism.

        The positive assertion of knowledge, either of the existence of gods or the absence of gods, can also be attributed to some theists and some atheists. Put simply, theism and atheism deal with belief, and agnosticism deals with (absence of) rational claims to asserting knowledge.”

        You see they have encyclopedic back up for their toxic sophistries. They have millenia of destroying dissenting cultural and individualist writings under their belt.

        Here is a “rebuttal” of Penn Jillette’s stamp collecting analogy:
        How the stamp collecting analogy fails
        Submitted by Robert Martin on Mon Aug 22nd, 3.46pm
        In my recent discussions with atheists in recent times many have responded that ‘atheism is not a faith’. They are trying to suggest that atheism doesn’t bring with it a kind of ‘worldview’ that the Christian faith brings with it. They then use the stamp collecting analogy to attempt to demonstrate that a negative or non-belief is not a belief system. Hence the analogy goes, ‘not believing in a god as some kind of belief system is like not collecting stamps is a hobby.’

        I think it’s an interesting move, and it has prompted me to think carefully about this issue, yet I would like to suggest that the stamp collecting analogy fails. I suggest it fails because ‘Not collecting stamps is a hobby’. I can, ‘not collect’ stamps and still be engaged in a hobby. I could collect cloth badges, model railways or pencils, and these are all alternative hobbies. Hence the analogy fails because ‘not collecting stamps IS still a hobby’.

        But more seriously the analogy fails because it isn’t a proper analogy. The analogy is based on a truism and hence it only proves what is assumes. If you change the analogy by inserting other words, you realise this, e.g. ‘is like not drinking water is drinking’ or ‘is like not eating sandwiches is lunch’. ‘Hobbies’ and ‘stamp collecting’ (and eating and drinking) are different to ‘believing’ and ‘belief systems’. ‘Belief’ is a matter of a commitment to certain facts of the world which are often unprovable, whereas stamp collecting is a pastime and can be proved (as can drinking, or eating etc).

        Hence, to summarise, Christians believe that there is a God, we can’t prove it but we act on ‘faith’ that it is true. Atheists believe that there is no god, they can’t prove it, but they act on ‘faith’ that it is true. Therefore atheism must be some kind of ‘faith’ commitment. This is different from stamp collecting because we can ‘prove’ that stamp collecting exists.

        This ‘analogy’ may appear to offer explanatory power, but in the end, I think, it fails. Can any atheists further explain the stamp collecting analogy, or am I missing something?

        Here’s another discussion of why Penn’s stamp collector analogy is wrong:

        I pointed this out in another thread, but since there were a few subsequent posts which simply re-asserted this idea without any sign of actually defending it, I thought I’d pull it out here into the light.

        The analogy that not believing in gods is like not collecting stamps is a poor one, and does not accurately reflect reality. If atheism is akin to just not collecting stamps then theism is akin to just collecting stamps.

        But no stamp collector has ever murdered, tortured, and abused millions of people for the sake of getting a new stamp, because there is nothing inherent to stamp collecting which requires you to either oppress other people or change your belief.
        No stamp collector has ever suggested that just by virtue of collecting stamps, he has access to a higher moral truth that cannot be tested. If one did, then we’d call that a religion because we understand it is different in essence from just collecting stamps.

        Clearly, obviously, all of that is much more than just a hobby, and it’s not just because it’s stronger, but because it’s fundamentally different. ‘Not collecting stamps’ and ‘not believing that someone should be murdered because they’re gay and a God exists which says you must kill all gays’ are so enormously NOT alike — again, not just because one is worse, but because it’s fundamentally different by its nature — that the more I think about it, the more I really dislike this “stamp collector” bumper-sticker of an idea that so many atheists are enamored of.

        No one is obligated to save the world. But if you’re not interested in actually helping the problem, then perhaps it is not necessary to also blithely go around declaring that the problem doesn’t even exist in the first place.

        In a world where saying ‘I am an atheist’ could never get you fired, ostracized or killed then maybe it’s the same as saying ‘I do not collect stamps’ but for those of us who, because we are gay or otherwise directly in the crosshairs of Jesus, do not have any choice but to fight religion because it actively fights us, tries to take our children away and keeps us from being full citizens, every fucking day, it’s not an option.

        So at the very least try not to describe our position as being somehow a need to show off a badge or be in a club or emphasize an absence. Try to understand that while you are free to just not believe in God and have that mean nothing else at all to you, many of us do not have that luxury.

        I’d love to be able to say that there’s nothing special or remarkable about atheism, but until that day arrives, I thoroughly reject any analogy which compares being an atheist to not being some other thing which is fundamentally unlike religion.

        NOTE: I am aware this analogy was first deployed as an attempt to explain to theists that theism is not the default position, but I feel its basic flaws still render it unhelpful overall.

        I assert that there are no gods, that any possible “god” discovered wouldn’t fit any existing definition of the word, and that any theology or theist claiming to possess any truth about a god or gods is wrong.

        – My take on theists, is they are my enemy until such time as they explicitly disavow there being any legitimate use of force over anyone who does not consent.

        It will definitely benefit me. I think it will also benefit them.

        I’d like to see a NAP tribe of christians with no more social power than believers in astrology and believers in the existence of aliens. Then they could finally begin to move forward and start producing for themselves, and not owe their bloodsoaked hegemony to being the second blow of the one two statist punch.

        • Dear Tor,

          It’s truly bizarre, as Me2 has correctly noted.

          Everything is fine as long as the topic is not religion. But as soon as the topic changes to religion, it’s as if a switch is flipped inside the religionist and he or she suddenly throws all logic out the window.

          Then all one hears is “God said it. I believe it. That settles it.”

          • Morning, Bevin!

            For me, religion is like fuuhhhhhhtttttball. I don’t grok them the way (it appears) most people do. To me, religion – formal belief in/worship of a specific god – seems as weird as being emotionally (and financially) invested in the outcome of a game played by paid entertainers in colorful outfits.

            Maybe I’m the weirdo for not “getting” it?

            • Dear Eric,

              ‘Maybe I’m the weirdo for not “getting” it?’

              I sure as hell hope not, because I’m in the same boat.

              I have never gotten it. I went to high school in the DC area. I got dragged along to the football games. I watched them in total incomprehension.

              I especially never got the whole “captain of the football team” and “head cheerleader” class hierarchy either.

              I never got the ritual of rattling off some “star athlete’s” scoring record. Was I really supposed to be impressed?

              I mean, really, how important is it in the larger scheme of things that jock X ran so Y yards in some damned ball game?

              How does that change the course of civilization? How is that anywhere as near as important as Nikola Tesla inventing alternating current for example?

              It’s a crazy world we inhabit.

            • Eric,

              I’m a football fan to. I find the sport fun to watch, but not a big deal so to speak. Then again, I’m not really a fanatical fan. I’ve only watched two or three games this year, and will probably watch the Superbowl but I’m unlikely to watch any other games. I’m a Miami Dolphins fan, and when they missed the playoffs this year, I was disappointed, but I wasn’t ANGRY. It is just a game after all.

              Religion isn’t really similar. Football, get it or not, is just a hobby. If you don’t care about it, no biggie. Religion is a different issue. It deals with questions of the supernatural. I do strongly believe that its reasonable to believe in Christianity. That I cannot properly convey those reasons to you for your satisfaction doesn’t mean those reasons aren’t good ones.

              But then, I’m also a Calvinist, I believe God is going to save who he wants to save. So I really can’t convince you. I can share with you, but only God can open your heart, if that’s what he wants to do.

    • Tor, do you think anyone cares to read 9 or 10 pages of your garbage? What is this all about? “A horse cannot live in space” Really? I guess Libertarians live in their own world of deep thought. The problem is that it is usually not based on facts except for the quoted statement I just mentioned of yours. Clover

      Tor the world does not need 10 pages of that garbage.

  16. “A curious aspect of the theory of evolution,” said Jacques Monod, “is that everybody thinks he understands it.”

    A human being, looking at the natural world, sees purpose everywhere. A rabbit’s legs, built and articulated for running; a fox’s jaws, built and articulated for tearing. But what you see is not exactly what is there…

    In the era B.D., Before Darwin, the cause of all this was a very great puzzle unto science. The Goddists said “God did it”, because they got 50 bonus points every time they used the word “God” in a sentence.

    But really, this is unfair. In the times Before Darwin, it seemed a much more reasonable hypothesis. Find a watch in the desert, they used to say, and you can infer the existence of a watchmaker.

    But is you look objectively at the rationality in all of Nature, rather than picking and choosing your examples, you start to notice things that don’t fit the Judeo-Christian concept of one benevolent God. Foxes seem well-designed to catch rabbits. Rabbits seem well-designed to evade foxes. Why is this. Was the Creator having trouble making up His mind?

    Were I to design a toaster oven, I wouldn’t design it so one part tries to get electricity to the coils and a second part tries to prevent electricity from getting to the coils. It would be a waste of effort.

    So what schizophrenic intelligently designed the ecosystem, with its predators and prey, viruses and bacteria? Even the cactus plant, which you might think well-designed to provide water fruit to desert animals, is covered with inconvenient spines.

    The ecosystem would make much more sense spiritually, if instead of being designed by a unitary Who, was rather created by a whole horde of deities—say from the Hindu or Shinto religions.

    This handily explains both the ubiquitous purposefulnesses, and the ubiquitous conflicts: More than one deity acted, often at cross-purposes. The fox and rabbit were both designed, but by distinct competing deities. I wonder if anyone has ever observed the seemingly overwhelming evidence for Hinduism rather than Christianity provided by nature.

    The Judeo-Christian God is alleged to be benevolent—well, sort of. And yet much of nature’s purposefulness seems downright cruel.

    Darwin himself posited a non-standard Creator for studying Ichneumon wasps, whose paralyzing stings preserve its prey to be eaten alive by its larvae.

    “I cannot persuade myself,” wrote Darwin, “that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have intelligently designed the Ichneumonidae with the express intention of their feeding within the living bodies of Caterpillars, or that a cat should play with mice.”

    I wonder if any earlier thinker remarked on the excellent evidence this inherent cruelty provided for Manichaen religions over monotheistic ones.

    By now you can guess the new adapted punchline. Instead of just saying “God” and getting 50 bonus points. The newest faith is to say “evolution” and getting 100 bonus points.

    Sadly, that’s likely how most people absorb the “scientific” explanation of things. As a magical purposefulness factory in Nature.

    I think of Storm as played by Halle Berry in the movie X-Men, who in one mutation gets the ability to throw lightning bolts. Why? Well, there’s this thing called “evolution” that somehow pumps a lot of purposefulness into Nature, and the changes happen to her through “mutations”.

    So if Storm gets a really large mutation, she can be redesigned to throw lightning bolts. Radioactivity is a popular super origin: radiation causes mutations, so more powerful radiation causes more powerful mutations. That’s logic.

    But evolution doesn’t allow just any kind of purposefulness to leak into Nature. That’s what makes evolution a success as an empirical hypothesis.

    If evolutionary biology could explain a toaster oven, not just a tree, it would be worthless. There’s a lot more to evolutionary theory than pointing at Nature and saying, “Now purpose is allowed,” or “Evolution did it!”

    The strength of a theory is not what it allows, but what it prohibits; if you can invent an equally persuasive explanation for any outcome, then in reality you have zero knowledge.

    “Many non-biologists, think that it is for their benefit that rattles grow on rattlesnake tails.” Bzzzt! This kind of purposefulness is not allowed. Evolution doesn’t work by letting flashes of purposefulness creep in at random—reshaping one species for the benefit of a random recipient.

    Evolution is powered by a systematic correlation between the different ways that different genes construct organisms, and how many copies of those genes make it into the next generation. For rattles to grow on rattlesnake tails, rattle-growing genes must become more and more frequent in each successive generation. (Actually genes for incrementally more complex rattles, but if I start describing all the fillips and caveats to evolutionary biology, we really will be here all day.)

    There isn’t an Evolution Fairy that looks over the current state of Nature, decides what would be a “good idea”, and chooses to increase the frequency of rattle-constructing genes.

    I suspect this is where a lot of people get stuck, in evolutionary biology. They understand that “helpful” genes become more common, but “helpful” lets any sort of purpose leak in. They don’t think there’s an Evolution Fairy, yet they ask which genes will be “helpful” as if a rattlesnake gene could “help” non-rattlesnakes.

    The key realization is that there is no Evolution Fairy. There’s no outside force deciding which genes ought to be promoted. Whatever happens, happens because of the genes themselves.

    Genes for constructing (incrementally better) rattles, must have somehow ended up more frequent in the rattlesnake gene pool, because of the rattle. In this case it’s probably because rattlesnakes with better rattles survive more often—rather than mating more successfully, or having brothers that reproduce more successfully, etc.

    Maybe predators are wary of rattles and don’t step on the snake. Or maybe the rattle diverts attention from the snake’s head. (As George Williams suggests, “The outcome of a fight between a dog and a viper would depend very much on whether the dog initially seized the reptile by the head or by the tail.”)

    But that’s just a snake’s rattle. There are much more complicated ways that a gene can cause copies of itself to become more frequent in the next generation. Your brother or sister shares half your genes. A gene that sacrifices one unit of resources to bestow three units of resource on a brother, may promote some copies of itself by sacrificing one of its constructed organisms. (If you really want to know all the details and caveats, buy a book on evolutionary biology; there is no royal road.)

    The main point is that the gene’s effect must cause copies of that gene to become more frequent in the next generation. There’s no Evolution Fairy that reaches in from outside. There’s nothing which decides that some genes are “helpful” and should, therefore, increase in frequency. It’s just cause and effect, starting from the genes themselves.

    This explains the strange conflicting purposefulness of Nature, and its frequent cruelty. It explains even better than a horde of Shinto deities.

    Why is so much of Nature at war with other parts of Nature? Because there isn’t one Evolution directing the whole process. There’s as many different “evolutions” as reproducing populations.

    Rabbit genes are becoming more or less frequent in rabbit populations. Fox genes are becoming more or less frequent in fox populations. Fox genes which construct foxes that catch rabbits, insert more copies of themselves in the next generation. Rabbit genes which construct rabbits that evade foxes are naturally more common in the next generation of rabbits. Hence the phrase “natural selection”.

    Why is Nature cruel? You, a human, can look at an Ichneumon wasp, and decide that it’s cruel to eat your prey alive. You can decide that if you’re going to eat your prey alive, you can at least have the decency to stop it from hurting.

    It would scarcely cost the wasp anything to anesthetize its prey as well as paralyze it. Or what about old elephants, who die of starvation when their last set of teeth fall out?

    These elephants aren’t going to reproduce anyway. What would it cost evolution—the evolution of elephants, rather—to ensure that the elephant dies right away, instead of slowly and in agony? What would it cost evolution to anesthetize the elephant, or give it pleasant dreams before it dies? Nothing; that elephant won’t reproduce more or less either way.

    If you were talking to a fellow human, trying to resolve a conflict of interest, you would be in a good negotiating position—would have an easy job of persuasion. It would cost so little to anesthetize the prey, to let the elephant die without agony! Oh please, won’t you do it, kindly… um…

    But of course, there’s really no one to argue with.

    Human beings fake their justifications, figure out what they want using one method, and then justify it using another method. There’s no Evolution of Elephants Fairy that’s trying to (a) figure out what’s best for elephants, and then (b) figure out how to justify it to the Evolutionary Overseer, who (c) doesn’t want to see reproductive fitness decreased, but is (d) willing to go along with the painless-death idea, so long as it doesn’t actually harm any genes.

    There’s no advocate for the elephants anywhere in the system.

    Humans, who are often deeply concerned for the well-being of animals, can be very persuasive in arguing how various kindnesses wouldn’t harm reproductive fitness at all. Sadly, the evolution of elephants doesn’t use a similar algorithm; it doesn’t select nice genes that can plausibly be argued to help reproductive fitness. Simply: genes that replicate more often become more frequent in the next generation. Like water flowing downhill, and equally benevolent.

    A human, looking over Nature, starts thinking of all the ways we would design organisms. And then we tend to start rationalizing reasons why our design improvements would increase reproductive fitness—a political instinct, trying to sell your own preferred option as matching the boss’s favored justification.

    And so, amateur evolutionary biologists end up making all sorts of wonderful and completely mistaken predictions. Because the amateur biologists are drawing their bottom line—and more importantly, locating their prediction in hypothesis-space—using a different algorithm than evolutions use to draw their bottom lines.

    A human engineer would have designed human taste buds to measure how much of each nutrient we had, and how much we needed. When fat was scarce, almonds or cheeseburgers would taste delicious. But if you started to become obese, or if vitamins were lacking, lettuce would taste delicious. But there is no Evolution of Humans Fairy, which intelligently planned ahead and designed a general system for every contingency. It was a reliable invariant of humans’ ancestral environment that calories were scarce. So genes whose organisms loved calories, became more frequent. Like water flowing downhill.

    We are simply the embodied history of which organisms did in fact survive and reproduce, not which organisms ought prudentially to have survived and reproduced.

    The human retina is constructed backward: The light-sensitive cells are at the back, and the nerves emerge from the front and go back through the retina into the brain. Hence the blind spot. To a human engineer, this looks simply stupid—and other organisms have independently evolved retinas the right way around. Why not redesign the retina?

    The problem is that no single mutation will reroute the whole retina simultaneously. A human engineer can redesign multiple parts simultaneously, or plan ahead for future changes. But if a single mutation breaks some vital part of the organism, it doesn’t matter what wonderful things a Fairy could build on top of it—the organism dies and the genes decreases in frequency.

    If you turn around the retina’s cells without also reprogramming the nerves and optic cable, the system as a whole won’t work. It doesn’t matter that, to a Fairy or a human engineer, this is one step forward in redesigning the retina. The organism is blind. Evolution has no foresight, it is simply the frozen history of which organisms did in fact reproduce. Evolution is as blind as a halfway-redesigned retina.

    Find a watch in a desert, you might recall reading earlier, and you can infer the watchmaker.

    There were once those who denied this, who thought that life “just happened” without need of an optimization process, mice being spontaneously generated from straw and dirty shirts.

    If we ask who was more correct—the theologians who argued for a Creator-God, or the intellectually unfulfilled atheists who argued that mice spontaneously generated—then the theologians must be declared the victors: evolution is not God, but it is closer to God than it is to pure random entropy.

    Mutation is random, but selection is non-random. This doesn’t mean an intelligent Fairy is reaching in and selecting. It means there’s a non-zero statistical correlation between the gene and how often the organism reproduces. Over a few million years, that non-zero statistical correlation adds up to something very powerful. It’s not a god, but it’s more closely akin to a god than it is to snow on a television screen.

    In a lot of ways, evolution is like unto theology. “Gods are ontologically distinct from creature or they’re not worth the paper they’re written on.” And indeed, the Shaper of Life is not itself a creature. Evolution is bodiless, quite like the Judeo-Christian deity.

    Omnipresent in Nature, immanent in the fall of every leaf. Vast as a planet’s surface. Billions of years old. Itself unmade, arising naturally from the structure of physics. Doesn’t that all sound like something that might have been said about God?

    And yet the Maker has no mind, as well as no body. In some ways, His handiwork is incredibly poor design by human standards. It is internally divided. Most of all, it isn’t nice.

    In a way, Darwin discovered God—a God that failed to match the preconceptions of theology, and so passed unheralded. If Darwin had discovered that life was created by an intelligent agent—a bodiless mind that loves us, and will smite us with lightning if we dare say otherwise—people would have said “My gosh! That’s God!”

    But instead Darwin discovered a strange alien God—not comfortably “ineffable”, but really genuinely different from us. Evolution is not a God, but if it were, it wouldn’t be Jehovah. It would be H. P. Lovecraft’s Azathoth, the blind idiot God burbling chaotically at the center of everything, surrounded by the thin monotonous piping of flutes.

    Which you might have predicted, if you had really looked at Nature.

    So much for the claim some religionists make, that they believe in a vague deity with a correspondingly high probability. Anyone who really believed in a vague deity, would have recognized their strange inhuman creator when Darwin said “Aha!”

    So much for the claim some religionists make, that they are waiting innocently curious for Science to discover God. Science has already discovered the sort-of-godlike maker of humans—but it wasn’t what the religionists wanted to hear. They were waiting for the discovery of their God, the highly specific God they want to be there. They shall wait forever, for the great discovery has already taken place, and the winner is Azathoth.

    Well, more power to us humans. If only we can defeat the state. We’ll be left only with a Creator we’ll handily be able to outwit. And doesn’t that beat being a pet of the state or of nature? I for one am glad the God of nature is a lot like Azathoth and not at all like Odin.

    • Epic. I am humbled.

      “We are simply the embodied history of which organisms did in fact survive and reproduce, not which organisms ought prudentially to have survived and reproduced.”

      “Evolution has no foresight, it is simply the frozen history of which organisms did in fact reproduce.”

      Yes. Oh Mighty Thor yes.

  17. Far and away this synonym for authoritarian is the most common, most ingrained, and will prove to be the most difficult thing to eradicate in America:

    The older you get, the more you favor it. For the life of me, I don’t know why. The more you fail, the less you are in control of things, the more you resort to it.

    disciplinarian (noun)
    “one who enforces order,” 1630s, see discipline; earlier used of Puritans who wanted to establish the Presbyterian “discipline” in England (1580s). Meaning “advocate of greater discipline” is from 1746.

    authoritarian
    1. favoring or enforcing strict obedience to authority, especially that of the government, at the expense of personal freedom.
    “the transition from an authoritarian to a democratic regime”

    synonyms: autocratic, dictatorial, despotic, tyrannical, draconian, oppressive, repressive, illiberal, undemocratic; disciplinarian, domineering, overbearing, iron-fisted, high-handed, peremptory, imperious, strict, rigid, inflexible; informalbossy

    antonyms: democratic, liberal
    showing a lack of concern for the wishes or opinions of others; domineering; dictatorial.
    “he had an authoritarian and at times belligerent manner”

    noun
    noun: authoritarian; plural noun: authoritarians
    1. an authoritarian person.
    synonyms: autocrat, despot, dictator, tyrant; disciplinarian, martinet

  18. There are things that could be done to reign in questionable behavior by police and other public officials.
    1. Eliminate both “absolute and qualified immunity” for ALL public officials. If public officials (yes, this includes police officers and their administrators, firefighters, prosecutors, court officials and all other “public servants”). If they knew that they could be sued personally (and possibly lose everything they own), they would tend to behave themselves. Require ALL public officials to obtain and maintain “personal liability (malpractice) insurance” at their own expense as a condition of employment. You can bet that insurance companies would react to instances of abuse by law enforcement personnel faster and more thorough than through existing channels.
    2. Establish and enforce an “video audit trail” whenever there is interaction by any public official with the public. In the case of police and firefighters, no “video audit trail” would mean the inadmissability of “evidence” as well as censure and immediate dismissal with loss of pension if there is a failure to assure that this “video audit trail” is present. “Equipment malfunction” would not be a valid excuse. A “video audit trail” works “both ways” and would also do much to eliminate the possibility of frivolous lawsuits by the public against public officials as well as assure that public officials “behave themselves”. This is especially true in police interrogation rooms where police-coerced “false confessions” occur with alarming frequency.
    3. Prosecutors should be subordinate to the grand jury. Grand juries should be able to indict without needing the prosecutor’s “permission”. Of course, there would be NO absolute or qualified immunity for prosecutors or grand jurors.
    4. Civilian police review boards should be mandatory–they should exclude anyone who has a police background or relatives of police from serving. Civilian police review boards should be able to bring up charges against corrupt police officials and officers as well. No police agency should be permitted to investigate itself. All investigations must be done by an outside agency.
    These changes would put the public on an equal footing with our “leaders” (who are actually supposed to be subordinate to us citizens).
    There have been many cases where people who have been legally recording police (mis)behavior have been harassed by police, their equipment damaged or destroyed, and charges brought against them. Severe punishment should be meted out to those public officials who interfere with lawful recording by citizens.
    The “Supreme Court” threw another “bone” to the cops, stating that ignorance of the law is acceptable for cops…but not for us mundanes…

    • I include firefighters in the abolition of their immunity because of a few cases where their criminality was evident:
      A firefighter from a certain southeastern Michigan community claimed to have a “arson dog”–one that could detect accelerants. This “firefighter” and his dog were instrumental in ruining many peoples’ lives by his testimony alone. Insurance companies LOVED this guy as he was able to get them out of paying (valid) claims. People were denied valid insurance claims and prosecuted for arson on the testimony of this “arson dog’s handler”.
      Those who were “burned” by this supposed arson dog “handler had no recourse, because of “qualified immunity”. The firefighter (and fire department) could not be sued.
      Finally one citizen who had been accused of arson fought back by suing to prove the “arson dog’s” ability. The dog was found to have NO special ability. The “arson dog” and his human master’s career was finally over. How many innocent people were convicted of arson and lost everything they owned??
      Another case was that of a plating plant that caught fire. The owners had a fire department “approved” fire plan in place which involved shutting off utilities and shutting down processes in an orderly fashion. The firefighters that responded to the fire pushed the owner out of the way, and told him that they were going to do things “their way”. The building burned to the ground.
      A firefighter’s job (for at least 98% of the time) is not inherently dangerous. This does not take away from the seriousness of their job, which is to be commended. but, firefighter arrogance can be just as dangerous as police arrogance. THIS is why firefighters should be included in the abolition of immunity for public officials.

      • People like to believe in magic things.
        The magic dog. The magic computer. Just use these props and they’ll believe just about anything. Of course these things require an expert interpreter. The props have changed but this is no different than any time hundreds or thousands of years ago. None of these people believe the expert interpreter is scamming them for his own selfish purposes. Oh today they think those ancient people so stupid for believing in oracles and priests but today people believe in police dog handlers and government paid scientists with computers. And it doesn’t matter how much they are wrong, just like in ancient times, the beliefs persist.

    • anarchyst, the US is the only country still using English common law to have grand juries. Since a prosecutor gets to tell anything he likes to said grand jury, the onus to prove you are not a criminal exists, and you don’t even know of the accusations, before anything else happens. I’d rather show my innocence by walking on coals. A blister is far better than anything the just us system has in store for you.

  19. I hope it never comes to this, but the way things are going–unaccountability and “justification” for citizen murders by cops “under color of authority”, things do not look good…

    Notice that these “big and bad” SWAT teams almost NEVER go into rough neighborhoods to roust gangbangers and other (real) criminal types, but harass honest citizens at will (on a “tip” by questionable criminal types). The honest citizen is the easiest person to harass because, in most instances, THEY DON’T FIGHT BACK. And if they target the “wrong house”, trash the place, and murder innocent citizens defending themselves, at the most, get a “paid vacation” while the “higher-ups” and police union officials figure out a way to “cover up” the murders committed “under color of authority”.

    This scenario (that I hope never happens) becomes more likely with each case of police misconduct–
    Find out where one rogue officer lives. case his home. Wait until early one morning and catch him as he comes out of his house- bring a gang. Once you have successfully beaten him into unconsciousness, go into his home- tie up his family. Break everything in sight. Pour sugar in all the gas tanks of their vehicles. Get all the info you can off their cell phones and computers. move on to the next officer until you have visited them all. Then case the chief of police. Keep doing this and they might start to back off being such assholes. When these bastards have to “grow eyes in the backs of their heads”, they might decide to “behave themselves’.

    The above is just a thought. I hope it will never come to that, but . . . with the amount of unjustified murders that cops get away with . . . it is a possibility. American citizens are very slow to react, deferring to “lawful authority” whenever possible–however “pushback” is a possibility.

    There have been individual cases where rogue cops have been “black bagged”, tied to a tree and warned to start behaving themselves. Of course, these cases are never publicized.

    Most cops want to go home to their families at the end of their shift.

    The sad part of this whole situation is that when the SHTF, the few “good” cops will be lumped in with the “bad apples”. The “good” cops will be subject to the same “treatment” as their corrupt brethren.

    Look up “the battle of Athens, Tennessee”. This is one instance of the townspeople “taking back” their town from corrupt “law enforcement” officials..

    Obtain and read “Unintended Consequences” by John Ross. In it, are history lessons, law lessons, and ways to take back our country . . .

    That being said, “law enforcement” arms of ALL federal agencies should be disbanded…

  20. I went to visit family in New York for Christmas, but the visit didn’t last very long. My father is a retired IRS agent, and my mother is a Catholic. During dinner, a political discussion erupted. I was able to refute the arguments of every State worshiping relative in attendance. I became the pariah of the evening, and soon fled back to my home.

    I think most people in this world don’t really adhere to any particular ideology, and tend to think that no political belief is any more or less valid than any other. This is what makes democracy popular perhaps, the idea that it doesn’t much matter, that it is all a matter of personal preference, and whoever wins, everything will be okay.

    For anyone who bothers to take a look at things however, this presents some major problems. We’ve got thousands of years of history, hundreds of millions of violent deaths, and immeasurable economic disaster to analyze. Doing that analysis leads one who is tethered to reality to have very serious concerns about political and philosophical matters. They are, after all, matters of life and death.

    So to sit idly by while people discuss political matters from a position of ignorance is difficult. These people will later walk into voting booths with that ignorance and endorse misery and death. I have a hard time keeping my mouth shut when I see that happening, but at the same time, I know the conversation will not go anywhere good with my largely left leaning family members

    http://christophercantwell.com/2014/12/25/cantwell-christmas/

    • HAha, Tor!

      Your description of your experience visiting your fambly is precisely why I do not like to waste my time in the company of those who are not libertarians (or at least open to reality, and seekers of justice and truth, rather than just those maintaining the stat[e?]us quo)- as it is pointless.

      They are Clovers. You try to enlighten them, but it quickly becomes apparent they don’t care. No, it’s not usually that they so much disagree with us- but rather, they simply don’t care. They don’t want to hear the truth; they want to believe that all is well; and just go about their lives as “good citizens”, and therefore MUST stop their ears from hearing anything which might cause them to have a crisis of conscience or to ever see the cracks in the system which they are a part of, because then they would have to admit that they have been wrong; and change.

      I just have no interest in being around such people. It’s fine for THEM to pontificate about how “there should be a law…” or about the boogeyman in some desert halfway around the world, whom they will never have any dealings with, unless they sign-up to go over and bomb him….but when you mention all the actual facts or point out the illogicalness of the things they say, then you are the bad guy, simply for not going along with everyone else. Modern Western society in microcosm.

      • Dear Me2,

        Right. It’s the “willful” aspect of “willful ignorance” that presents a problem.

        Ignorance is often a matter of happenstance. One did not happen to be exposed to a certain fact or idea. No blame.

        But deliberate “blanking out” as Ayn Rand put it, that’s the real killer.

        • Sure. We are all ignorant until we are not. Some brains just prefer their comforting delusions to the coldness of reality and therefore consciously or sub-consciously block all contrary input and remain ignorant.

          I do somewhat pity the latter but I despise the former.

          • Me2, of course we’re all completely ignorant as such if you speak of how much we know(or how much we perceive or how we perceive anything, everything, and there are as many reasons why as people. To remain ignorant of something that’s right there for you to enlighten yourself at any time is, in my view, picking and choosing. I used to spread myself so thin trying to learn as much about so many things I was stressed by it but probably mostly in a good way. To discuss and learn everything you can about a subject and then fail to even recognize what is more likely the more accurate perception simply comes down for the most part, to being brainwashed. An endless supply of that for an endless amount of subjects. I feel sorry for those who talk their way around any subject and often nearly come out in support of that subjective view they have is probably only correct “in their view” less than half the time or even less than that. One exception after the other, one contradiction after the other, on and on to infinity, round and round but not ever really trying to pin something down is the sure sign of brainwashing on that subject. It does seem to spill over into other aspects and subject though. I wonder how that person could ever be a true libertarian. If that’s too brief, think on it awhile.

            • Dear 8sm,

              “One exception after the other, one contradiction after the other, on and on to infinity, round and round but not ever really trying to pin something down is the sure sign of brainwashing on that subject. ”

              That’s a good way to put it. The evidence of semi-conscious intellectual evasion starts to pile up. Soon it become obvious that the person is not merely ignorant, but willfully so, and is merely defending a position instead of seeking the truth.

              He is essentially saying “Stop it. Don’t confuse me with the facts.”

              David’s “logic” is like that. It is textbook “circular reasoning.”

              A common example of circular reasoning.

              This one is so mind-blowingly circular that you’d think it was a straw man. However, most Biblical literalists use the Bible as their main proof of God, and using the Bible as any form of evidence for God must assume the following circular argument.

              1, The Bible tells us that it is the word of God.
              2. The word of God is infallible.
              3. Therefore the Bible is infallible.
              4. And as such, the Bible must be the word of God.
              5. The word of God is infallible.
              6. Therefore the Bible is infallible.
              7. And…

              • The problem is that the god-heads are fundamentally dishonest.

                Self deluded liars.

                What is truly fascinating is how compartmentalized this is. You can watch them behave as a ‘normal’ being in every aspect of logic until religion is the topic. Then, CLICK, all logic and reason lose all meaning to these folks.

                Rationalization, claims of superior interpretation, appeals to ignorance and blatant lies (to themselves) dominate all cognitive processes.

                This, combined with the pre-filter that their brain employs to keep all counter-argument and counter-evidence out is almost like a kind of schizophrenia. You are not talking to the same person when the topic changes from anything else to religion.

                Look how many god questions are left unanswered here by the believers. Valid and rational questions that are ignored or answered with ‘because god’. These idiots can’t grasp that ‘because god’ is as meaningless as, ‘because’ full stop.

                • Dear Me2,

                  “You are not talking to the same person when the topic changes from anything else to religion.”

                  That’s the crux of the problem! Everything is fine as long as the subject is social, political, or economic.

                  But as soon as it touches on religion, then a different multiple personality suddenly takes over and the strangest statements come out of their mouths.

                  It’s like some SF movie in which humans have been possessed by alien intelligences, and when their eyes flash momentarily, the alien intelligence is in charge and doing the talking.

                  Utterly illogical non sequiturs that the previous, rigorously rational person would have laughed at, are now uttered as if they were obvious truths.

                  It’s truly baffling, and deeply dismaying. If even fellow libertarians are this irrational, It hardly inspires optimism for the future of human freedom.

                  • anarchyst, many people are in jail and/or are destitute after having everything they own confiscated on….on…..well……… there are many duplicitous people and govt. agencies involved, pick a charge(s). A good source to learn what REALLY is going on in Tx. and as such, many other states is a small email sub to Grits for Breakfast. It has news from just minutes ago but to the ages on practically every relevant-seeming law regarding legislation, laws incurred(sic), penalties, consequences. It covers judges, DA.’s and lawyers in depth. 99.8% of the subjects apply to every state. Probably Alaska’s jails will not be so hot as to kill hundreds or possibly thousands of inmates and workers yearly but Tx jails as well as La. jails also do.

                    • Sorry Me2,

                      The text I typed at the end disappeared.
                      How about this:
                      Disregard the Zs and replace the
                      B=””
                      Q=”href”
                      B a Q=”yourlinkgoeshere”N your text goes here B/ZaN

                      There should be a backslash after the second B before the Z.

                  • I know. Watching Moleman and David is depressing. Watching them simply ooze around any inconvenient obstacle to their bizarre brand logic give me little hope either.

                    The idea that these people consider themselves libertarian while endorsing the ultimate dictatorship is mind blowing.

                    P.S. Moleman, you have about a dozen posts @ you detailing your various contradictory and erroneous assumptions. Gonna set us right or just make an excuse why you can’t be bothered?

                    • Me2 said

                      P.S. Moleman, you have about a dozen posts @ you detailing your various contradictory and erroneous assumptions. Gonna set us right or just make an excuse why you can’t be bothered?

                      Should I quit my job?

                      As you can see, I am slowly working through all of the posts in this discussion- but considering that YOU are the one who never even attempted to refute the points which I made in an earlier response to you- detailing how so-called “logical scietific” types still ultimately must rely upon a god to explain the existence of the physical universe, I think what we have here is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. (You replied to that post- just doing what you accuse us of doing: Dismissing and ridiculing it, without so much as an attempt of refuting the points touched upon).

                      If you’d like, please post some links to the more recent posts of yours, of which you speak, so that I may respond to them sooner, O-K Mr. “God is imaginary, but I believe in science and logic. Now just listen to a theory of what happened eight-zillion years ago, in a place far far away, when this invisible being in the sky known as “nature” created life and matter….”?

                    • So the excuse thing then? Plenty of time for new comments though eh?

                      No, there is a search tool. Find them yourself.

                      As for me not refuting your science issues, I responded, you have not replied.

                    • Me2,

                      You should not be expected to post links to your previous posts.

                      However, even with a search feature, it can take some time to go through past posts. (I find this especially true if I am away for a few days and/or there have been many posts while I was doing other things.)

                    • Thanks Mithrandir,

                      I am reasonably sure Moleman is dodging. While the search may not work well, the posts in question I believe are entirely contained in this page.

                      It just seems to me that Moleman suffers from convenient selective reading blindness.
                      I could be wrong. He may answer all questions fully and honestly, making me look the fool.

                    • Me2,

                      Because I have trouble getting my post to be directly below the person I am replying I try to include the link to the comment I meant to reply in the post. (see top of post). I think it makes it easier for others to see where my reply is going.

                      Only downside is that I need to have 2 browser windows open at once — one for my reply and one for the comment url, (which I will paste into my reply).

                    • I think that only works from the What’s Happening? window. No?

                      If you can tell me how I will do so. Anything to make it easier for Moleman to educate me in the future. 🙂

                      Thanks.

                      P.S. but no Moleman, I am not going to find all my previous response for you so you can fail to comprehend or completely ignore them. Sorry.

                    • Me2,

                      How I get the links:

                      1) You need to be registered and logged in to the site.
                      2) Get to the comments section (Click on the comment bubble next to Eric Peters Autos on top of the screen)
                      3) Go to the comment that you want to leave a reply.
                      4) Right click (or how it is done on a MAC ) to copy the link location for the comment.
                      5) Paste the link comment in your reply
                      6) Put the following around the link
                      less than symbol followed by the letter a then a space then the word href then the equal sign then open quotes then your link goes here then close quotes followed by greater than symbol
                      then any text you wan to be underlined by the link followed by

                      I hope the above makes sense. If not try below and diregard all Zs. (Do not type the capital Zs)
                      Ztextforlink

                    • Me2,

                      One last time:

                      The text I typed at the end disappeared.
                      How about this:
                      Disregard the Zs and replace the
                      B=”less than symbol
                      N=”greaterthan symbol
                      /=”back slash
                      Q=”href”
                      B a Q=”yourlinkgoeshere”N your text goes here B/ZaN

                      There should be a backslash (/) after the second B before the Z.

                    • I had a moment, so;

                      Moleman – “Should I quit my job?”

                      –Dunno, what does god say?

                      “As you can see, I am slowly working through all of the posts in this discussion”

                      –I can?

                      “but considering that YOU are the one who never even attempted to refute the points which I made in an earlier response to you- detailing how so-called “logical scietific” types still ultimately must rely upon a god to explain the existence of the physical universe, I think what we have here is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. (You replied to that post- just doing what you accuse us of doing: Dismissing and ridiculing it, without so much as an attempt of refuting the points touched upon).”

                      —————-the post———–

                      Me2
                      December 27, 2014 at 6:57 am

                      Moleman – “science is just theory”

                      The full sentence – “All (true) science is theory in effort to question and ultimately understand the unknown”

                      At least quote all of what I said correctly. It seems you and David share a talent for ‘interpreting’ what is written.

                      Moleman – “I thought science was the quest for that which was demonstrable; observable and repeatable?”

                      Did I claim it was not?

                      Moleman – “Yet of course, (and this point you seem to have purposely missed) your so-called science is just as reliant upon the existence of an invisible, untestable; unknowable higer(sic) power as any religion, because I can not read any science textbook; report; lecture; or discussion, without them having to resort to their unknown god whenever the subject of cosmology; evolution; astronomy; geology, etc. comes up. ”

                      I did not miss it. I would not accept a proof that relied on an ‘unknown god’ as you put it. Nice strawman. Why do you try to paint me as supporting that which I have never endorsed? I make no claims that science has THE ANSWER. That is a god-folk claim.

                      Moleman – “They ADMIT to the existence of A god; Their god is just a different one (conveniently) than the God of Scripture.”

                      Standard ‘but they do it too’ defense of ones own ridiculous beliefs. Lame. Also, kind of idiotic as it is also an own goal as you have essentially said ‘but they are just as delusional as we are’.

                      Maybe ask me what I think before you start claiming to know. What precise scientific concept is it that requires ‘unknown god’. Be specific instead of your shotgun approach. Then maybe ask me if I believe it to be conclusive or still unresolved. Either way, have a little respect for the fact that I make no claims that science has THE ANSWER.

                      BTW ‘science’ (as I accept it) is not some monotheistic entity with dogma at its core.

                      ————————end of post————-

                      Moleman – “If you’d like, please post some links to the more recent posts of yours, of which you speak, so that I may respond to them sooner, O-K Mr. “God is imaginary, but I believe in science and logic. Now just listen to a theory of what happened eight-zillion years ago, in a place far far away, when this invisible being in the sky known as “nature” created life and matter….”?”

                      —-See above.

                      Seriously, do you not see the disconnect between what a poster says and your response? Really?

                      I suggest you take each line and respond to it. Otherwise you seem to lose focus. Just saying.

                    • Just for you Moleman, one more, cause you asked and I like you so much.

                      —————
                      Me2
                      December 27, 2014 at 7:36 am

                      (Moleman) – “The arguments you are plying on here and on David are all too “pat”; and all easily refuted by all but the very young and inexperienced- and such arguments are all very intellectually dishonest- or based on the ignorance of those who make them, and show their lack of knowledge in such things as The Bible; history; and language.”

                      (Me2) – So refute. No sophistry, no self-referential claims. I have yet to see you do so.

                      Unless I have missed something, your arguments can be summed up as ‘you just don’t understand’, with nothing to support the claim.
                      ——————-
                      In reference to;

                      Moleman
                      December 27, 2014 at 2:34 am

                    • Dear Me2,

                      “… while endorsing the ultimate dictatorship… ”

                      The contradiction is so obvious, so glaring, it boggles the mind.

                      How can one possibly claim to champion personal freedom and political liberty while simultaneously groveling before a tyrannical “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” so callously brutal that he makes every human dictator in history pale by comparison?

                      How can one possibly champion the sovereignty of the individual over the sovereignty of the state if one believes in a far worse oppressor of individual sovereignty?

                      How does that even begin to compute?

                      And I’m only talking about mindset here. Psychological attitude. I haven’t even addressed the matter of “His” utterly fictitious nature.

                    • Dear Me2,

                      Actually philosopher George H. Smith did a thorough demolition job on theism decades ago in his book “Atheism: The Case Against God”.

                      He spent years, took every argument theists have ever mustered for the existence of “God” and demolished them one after another using straightforward logic.

                      I’ve referenced it three or four times before over the years but no theist has dared to read it, even in ebook form for free.

                      Confirmation bias, ya know?

                      https://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/jksadegh/A%20Good%20Atheist%20Secularist%20Skeptical%20Book%20Collection/George%20H.%20Smith%20-%20Atheism-%20The%20Case%20Against%20God%20%28v1.1%29.pdf

                      In fact, more sophisticated Christian theologians knew that no rational case could ever be made for the existence of “God.” That’s why they resorted to “Faith trumps reason” arguments.

                      “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.” – Saint Augustine

                      Augustine was actually more honest than so-called “Creation scientists”.

                    • Hi Bevin,

                      Can you start a different Moleman, David, You, Me, anyone crazy enough to enter thread? Certain factors prevent my proper log in.

                      I am pretty sure most need hear no more of the recent ‘because god’. Somewhere that does not pollute Eric’s site would make me feel less a ‘poor guest’.

                    • Thanks. On my tablet now.

                      But truly I have no care of the god/no god. It is merely a case of if someone says ‘X is true’, and I say ‘prove it’, they better have a cogent argument or enjoy being ridiculed for their stupidity.

                      I’m an asshole. Welcome to the internet.

                    • Considering Eric’s desire to keep this from being a “religious” site I’m attempting to limit my involvement in the religious debate. Not avoiding it entirely, but not really trying to convince you guys to be Christians either. There was some stuff, from the Christian standpoint that I wanted to discuss with Mole and Philip… wasn’t so much looking to debate all the people who don’t believe.

                      Truth is axiomatic. What you can prove depends on your axioms. My starting axioms are logic and scripture.

                    • But how is scripture “axiomatic”? By which, I assume you mean incontrovertibly true; self evident, inarguable? This seems to be what you mean – and it forms the basis of everything that follows. If “x,” then “y.” Well, sure. But this assumes “x” is not merely an assertion; a belief. Something unproven.

                      Are the “scriptures” of the Koran less “axiomatic”?

                      How so?

                      Both are just documents. Words on paper. Or rather, neither have been proved to be anything more than that.

                      I know you believe the Christian scriptures are something more; that they are the literal word of the one true god, transmuted into words through human hands but authored by the spirit of the one true god.

                      But – again – Muslims (and many others) believe just as fervently in the divine nature of their words on paper… that their god is the one true god…

                      Don’t you see?

                      This blind spot fascinates me as much as it concerns me. The concerned part arising from the strident – even fanatical – nature of the beliefs involved, which seem to be immune to reason.

                      As others have already noted, one can have an entirely rational/reasonable discussion with people – based on the “ground rules” of such discussions (i.e., that assertions must be backed up with objective facts to be taken as more than mere assertions; that just insisting something’s true does not make it actually true) on almost any subject except this subject.

                      How to explain?

                      I suspect it has to do with early childhood conditioning, supplemented by social pressure within the context of one’s family and close circle. Very, very hard to question religion when everyone in one’s family “believes” and one knows how they’d react to any indication of non-belief. And we mustn’t forget Ignatius Loyala, either. “Give me a child for the first ten years,” he said, “and he will be mine for life.”

                      Indeed.

                      Also worth mentioning in this context is that Heinrich Himmler modeled the SS on the Catholic Church and the Jesuits in particular. Powerful mojo.

                    • David,

                      So the excuse thing too?

                      It is always the same.

                      Make ridiculous claims.
                      Argue based on belief not rational logic.
                      Ignore all inconsistency and contradiction.
                      Claim superior understanding and interpretation.
                      Find some excuse to not back up first claims and ignore all previously demolished augments.

                      You will be doing this all over again soon, here or elsewhere, having learned nothing.

                      Seen it too many times to count.

                      Self deluded liars.

                  • Dear Me2,

                    I admit I feel conflicted about this. On the one hand, the number of people who will affirm the rightness of the NAP and anarchism is vanishingly small, albeit it increasing at an encouraging rate among millennials. As a result, I am sometimes reluctant to push too hard. Finding allies is hard enough already.

                    On the other hand, in the long run, reason is the only firm foundation for any theory of human rights and individual liberty. Faith based libertarianism, rooted as it is in belief in an invisible being in the sky who must be obeyed without question, is clearly a flat out contradiction of libertarianism.

                    After all, as David conceded, death by stoning merely for working on “Don’t Work or be Murdered Day” can be invoked or revoked at the whim of a capricious deity. That is hardly reassuring to anyone seeking a solid foundation for ethics and morality.

                    Papering over the differences will not work in the long run. Eventually the irreconcilable contradictions will have to be dealt with, no matter how unpleasant the process may be.

                    As the King of Siam in The King and I was wont to say, “it is a puzzlement.”

                    • Hi Bevin

                      “Eventually the irreconcilable contradictions will have to be dealt with, no matter how unpleasant the process may be. ”

                      Optimist?… 🙂

                      It’s a hopeful thought but of course you then have to leave the possibility open that the dealing with irreconcilable contradictions unpleasant part, is where they bury us up to our necks and smite us with rocks for being infidels.

                      They will all claim that that would never happen, completely ignoring that it already has and continues to this day, ‘in the name of god’.

                    • Unfortunately, I don’t think reason can prevail.

                      The credulous mob can be controlled by small group of cunning folks, to do their bidding. If everyone else is doing it, they won’t question or resist.

                      The critical thinkers and libertarians cannot be organized in the same way, simply because they will not simply do as they are told. They will question and resist.

                      One side gets an unquestioning army, ready to enforce dogma, the other gets a disparate and recalcitrant, loose grouping of somewhat like minded individuals, who specifically don’t want to force anything upon anyone.

                      Just look at how forces are trained. Beat the individuality and critical thinking out of the grunt so you can build an unquestioning machine for the cause. Some call it Sunday school. Or just public school for that matter.

                      The odds in Vegas for the thinking side, probably not good. Hope I’m wrong.

                    • Dear Me2,

                      Atheism is already winning over theism.

                      Compare Europe today with Europe during the Spanish Inquisition, or America today with America during the Salem Witch Trials.

                      The difference is real, not imaginary.

                      Even most of those who are nominally religious and say they believe in God, tend to be “Sunday Christians” who are embarrassed by “bible thumpers” who take religion too seriously.

                      The grip that religion once had over society is steadily weakening.

                      Of course the picture is not all rosy. Much of that blind faith has been transmuted into adherence to a secular religion known as “democracy.”

                    • Hi Bevin,

                      Not contradicting anything you said;

                      The religious numbers themselves are, to me, of little value as the devotion ranges from ‘meh’ to ‘all who do not (or do) X must burn, suffer, die…… A few true fanatics at one end can really skew the actual societal impact.

                      Bevin – “Much of that blind faith has been transmuted into adherence to a secular religion known as “democracy.””

                      Indeed. Or patriotism, more accurately ‘Hate-them-ism’.

                    • Bevin said:

                      Much of that blind faith has been transmuted into adherence to a secular religion known as “democracy.”

                      So true! That is what the powers that be rely on to keep the pluralistic system enshrined. They know that the majority will ultimately vote for what they think is the imposition of their brand of morality on the rest of society- so TPTB offer two “competing” teams; each speaking words that appease the beliefs of a good percentage of the population. Of course, even that is a scam, as either party ultimately practices the very same things- it’s just the illusion that they are “for” one group’s ideals; and the fact that they pay homage to and and use the verbiage of those ideals, that ensures that these PTB will always remain in power.

                    • Bevin,

                      Provided everyone is willing to coexist with others and not force their beliefs on others, I do not see a problem with other people regardless of their belief or unbelief.

                      A big problem as I see it is when some people attempt to force their views/beliefs at the end of the proverbial gun to others that disagree with their views/beliefs.

                      I do not see why (Group A) cannot coexist with (Group B) or any other group. (Group A) leaves other groups to worship (or not worship) as they believe/choose and other groups do the same for (Group A).

                      I cannot speak intelligently on other faiths, but in Christianity, God (not individual people) ultimately determines whether one goes to heaven or does not go to heaven. I try to do my best and hopefully not hurt/harm others while I walk the Earth.

                      If everyone did their best and tried not to harm/hurt others, then many problems and suffering would be alleviated.

                      I think NAP works well within the Christian framework. (NAP works well with many different frameworks) I leave others to live their lives in peace from me and others do the same to me.

                      What can be done with people that want to impose their will on others forcefully? I’ll leave that for another day.

              • Bevin – “he evidence of semi-conscious intellectual evasion starts to pile up. Soon it become obvious that the person is not merely ignorant, but willfully so, and is merely defending a position instead of seeking the truth. ”

                Moleman is on duty for that one today. The desperation is evident. Excuse, evade, repeat. No substance, just spin.

  21. @bevin
    If my neighbor needs his pets, his opium, or his special books, that is all right with me. It is only when he makes demands on me that I have a problem.

    I do not recognize his dog as being the reincarnation of Anubis. Nor will I reverently submit to demands of the aliens he was visited by during his latest opium adventure, nor also will I submit to the commands of Koran that was handed down to him by the fifth Umayyad caliph himself.

    There are many comfort objects fondly treasured by their owners, and I only ask that they cherish them and keep faithful to them in their own space, and don’t try to involve me in them unless I express my consent.

    A comfort object is an item used to provide psychological comfort, especially in unusual or unique situations. Comfort objects may take many forms.

    Often charities will provide comfort objects to survivors of disasters.

    Psychologists are experimenting with the use of heavy thick fleece blankets to replace restraints such as straitjackets. They have noted through experiments with children who have autism that weighted blankets have a desirable soothing effect to help calm agitated patients.

    In human childhood development, the term transitional object is normally used. It is something, usually a physical object, which takes the place of the mother-child bond. Common examples include dolls, teddy bears or blankets.

    Transitional objects and transitional experience in reference to a particular developmental sequence. With “transition” meaning an intermediate developmental phase between the psychic and external reality. In this “transitional space” we can find the “transitional object.”

    When the young child begins to separate the “me” from the “not-me” and evolves from complete dependence to a stage of relative independence, it uses transitional objects. Infants see themselves and the mother as a whole. In this phase the mother “brings the world” to the infant without delay which gives it a “moment of illusion,” a belief that its own wish creates the object of its desire which brings with it a sense of satisfaction. This is called subjective omnipotence.

    Alongside the subjective omnipotence of a child lies an objective reality, which constitutes the child’s awareness of separateness between itself and desired objects. While the subjective omnipotence experience is one in which the child feels that its desires create satisfaction, the objective reality experience is one in which the child independently seeks out objects of desire.

    Later on the child comes to realize that the mother is separate from it through which it appears that the child has lost something. The child realizes that it is dependent on others and thus it loses the idea that it is independent, a realization which creates a difficult period and brings frustration and anxiety with it.

    In the end it is impossible that the mother is always there to “bring the world” to the baby, a realization which has a powerful, somewhat painful, but ultimately constructive impact on the child. Through fantasizing about the object of its wishes the child will find comfort. A transitional object can be used in this process. The transitional object is often the first “not me” possession that really belongs to the child. This could be a real object like a blanket or a teddy bear, but other “objects,” such as a melody or a word, can fulfill this role as well.

    This object represents all components of “mothering,” and it means that the child itself is able to create what it needs as well. It enables the child to have a fantasized bond with the mother when she gradually separates for increasingly longer periods of time. The transitional object is important at the time of going to sleep and as a defense against anxiety.

    Soft Kitty – Big Bang Theory

    • Dear Tor,

      Nathaniel Branden, who recently passed on, noted that “Psychology is the technology of ethics.”

      He correctly argued that people are attached to this or that belief system not because of the verbal justifications they give at the relatively superficial conceptual level, but because of deeper unvoiced and usually unconscious emotional anxieties at the deeper psychological level.

      In the case of religion, it is the desperate need for some surrogate father to provide reassurances in a vast, seemingly hostile universe. It’s actually glaringly apparent once one learns to see it.

      “Our Father, which art in heaven… ”

      “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want… Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. ”

      Democracy is a secularized version of theism, with the POTUS standing in for God as a secular instead of religious father figure.

      Hence the concept of “paternalistic government.”

  22. You searched ‘KILL’… This searches not just Bible pages, but comments, notes, references, postings, and all pages on this entire website for your keyword, ‘kill’. Please use discretion as Google displays ads based on keywords you type, not ads we choose.

    About 33,300 results (0.21 seconds)

    about 33,000 results for ‘kill’ in the official KJV online

    Thru spontaneous order, some way will likely be found to maintain the scriptural traditions that do not offend NAP, while discarding the ones that do not.

    And if thy good book offend thee, pick it up, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that thy most sacred tome should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into the living hell of statism and cloverism.

      • Here’s the Genevan & KJV in Rational Wiki. (check out the evisceration of Lew Rockwell http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Lew_Rockwell – No one yet has had the audacity to call Lew a white supremacist and let him know his so-called praxeology for fixing the economy is basically fascism with bad bow ties instead of jackboots.)

        Genevan Bible
        The Coverdale-Tyndale Bible was lightly revised as the Genevan Bible. In this form, it achieved enormous popularity and came to be the Bible of preference even up to the time of the English Civil War. This version was begun by Protestant exiles in Geneva, Switzerland, during the reign of Mary I, and was completed and dedicated to Queen Elizabeth I in 1560.

        The Genevan Bible was printed with extensive annotations and cross-references and was in fact a revolutionary book in terms of user-friendliness; not only did it contain this extensive teaching apparatus, but it was the first bible to be printed in the humanistic Roman type instead of black-letter type; it also contained concordances, maps, and indexes of names.

        It was also the first English bible to break up the Biblical text into numbered verses, which enabled specific texts to be found easily.

        Shakespeare and Milton used the Genevan Bible exclusively.

        “”In sixteen hundred and eleven, the King James Bible fell from Heaven
        —Anon

        Originally commissioned in the 1600s by King James VI/I of Scotland and England and published in 1611, the King James Version (KJV, also known as the Authorized Version) is the most famous translation into English and the favorite of many fundamentalist Protestants. It claims on its title page to be “Translated out of the Original Tongues: And with the former translations diligently compared and Revised”.

        In reality, it is a correction of the previous Genevan Bible, which is considered by non-fundamentalists to be of limited use, due to the outdated pre-Jacobean English and the reliance on manuscripts that are now believed to be less accurate than those currently used.

        The KJV has nevertheless been a major influence both on subsequent Biblical study and on the English language itself, being (along with the works of William Shakespeare) one of the major early touchstones of modern English literature. It is also the source of a great many code words that give evangelical English its unusual cant. (And, gosh darnit, it just sounds more Biblical than these modern-language translations. But, would it be so popular with them if they knew that King James was romantically involved with men?)

        The KJV is really quite important to the English language, as an enormous number of commonplace sayings, proverbs, clichés and common allusions come directly from it. You need at least some knowledge of the KJV to be highly literate in English. (The same reason you need to know your Shakespeare.) Parts of it are also really quite well-phrased and translated.

        Noted atheists such as H. L. Mencken, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens have endorsed it to this end.

        The King James Only movement holds that the 1611 Authorized Version, both as a translation and not only in the original text, was newly inspired by God to ensure an error-free version in the English language.

        This creates an interesting dilemma because Acts 12:4 describes the Jews celebrating Easter.

        Somewhat less hard-line KJV-onlyers prefer to defend the KJV based on its use of the Textus Receptus;

        the more extreme ones, however, deny even the existence of competing manuscripts, claiming the Septuagint was a hoax.

        The King James version is the preferred translation of the Mormons

      • The wife was watching an old movie today and I heard “puttin the fear o God into you”. I’ve heard it a million times spoken to myself, someone else or a group. It’s always in the same context, it must be since it’s always from the same similar source. So why do they try to hard to deny that’s part of it?

        • In private cat-lick skewl we were taught the following seven gifts of the Holy Spirit:
          sapientia, intellectus, consilium, fortitudo, scientia, pietas, and timor Domini.

          timor Domini in English is “fear o God”

          Wacky Pedantia says:
          The Catechism of the Catholic Church lists the seven gifts as follows:

          1Wisdom: it is the capacity to love spiritual things more than material ones;
          2Understanding: in understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as followers of Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live. The gift of understanding perfects a person’s speculative reason in the apprehension of truth. It is the gift whereby self-evident principles are known, Aquinas writes;
          3Counsel (right judgement): with the gift of counsel/right judgment, we know the difference between right and wrong, and we choose to do what is right. A person with right judgment avoids sin and lives out the values taught by Jesus;
          4Fortitude : with the gift of fortitude/courage, we overcome our fear and are willing to take risks as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with courage is willing to stand up for what is right in the sight of God, even if it means accepting rejection, verbal abuse, or physical harm. The gift of courage allows people the firmness of mind that is required both in doing good and in enduring evil;
          5Knowledge: with the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God. The gift of knowledge is more than an accumulation of facts;
          6Piety (reverence): with the gift of reverence, sometimes called piety, we have a deep sense of respect for God and the Church. A person with reverence recognizes our total reliance on God and comes before God with humility, trust, and love. Piety is the gift whereby, at the Holy Spirit’s instigation, we pay worship and duty to God as our Father, Aquinas writes;
          7Fear of the Lord (wonder and awe): with the gift of fear of the Lord we are aware of the glory and majesty of God. A person with wonder and awe knows that God is the perfection of all we desire: perfect knowledge, perfect goodness, perfect power, and perfect love. This gift is described by Aquinas as a fear of separating oneself from God. He describes the gift as a “filial fear,” like a child’s fear of offending his father, rather than a “servile fear,” that is, a fear of punishment. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

          It seems the NAP requires a modification of gift #2-understanding, since it is counsels one not to be “confused by the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.”

          I grew up with all this. I had a 1611 King James bible where even the alphabet was different, with a squiggle instead of an “s” such that it was the New Teftament.

          A grown man has to be able to understand when an ancient doctrine is in need of revision. Surely replacing the culture of violence with the culture of NAP is one of these times?

          A rational man also shouldn’t go down the Muslim road of lunacy where 2 + 2 doesn’t always equal 4 if one of the 2’s isn’t really a 2 because of some esoteric exception requiring a 1,000 words to articulate.

  23. Clover to me seems rather like Prissy in Gone With the Wind.

    A fanciful liar and emoting dilettante, whose every labor must be filtered through Mammie, in order for her to be of even the slightest use whatsoever.

    A mere assistant to the Head of Household and Veal in Residence – Mammie. An unreliable tender of the Crate. Far lower than a slave even.

    Prissy does errands for Mammie; who unlike Prissy, is a servant with sufficient wits and faculties to get things done. A mensch even, a second mother, and a wife by proxy. Transcending her station, to be the equal and more of freewomen not kept in a Veal Crate.

    Prissy In Gone With The Wind
    http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lbzeijMsea1qdqek4.jpg “I knows how to do it doctor, let me. I’s done it lots and lots. I’ve birthed dozens of babies. Let me, doctor, let me, I can do everthin’.

    Later… I don’t know nuffin about birthin no babies, Miss Scarlett.

    After the birth… And me and Miss Scarlett, we brung the baby. And she helped me a little, but I don’t expect no doctor could have done no better.

    Gone With The Wind Script
    http://www.scarlettonline.com/gone_with_the_wind_script_2.htm

    PRISSY
    I knows! I knows! I knows how to do it. I’ve done it
    lots and lots. let me doctor, let me. I can do
    everything.

    DR. MEADE
    Good. Then I’ll rely on you to help us.

    PRISSY
    Yes Doctor.

    SCARLETT
    Prissy! Prissy! Come here Prissy! Go pack my things
    and Miss Melanie’s, too. We’re to Tara right away,
    the Yankees are coming.

    SCARLETT
    Prissy! Prissy come here quick! Prissy, go get Dr.
    Meade, run quick! Don’t stand there like a scared
    goat, run! Hurry, Hurry! I’ll sell you South I will,
    I swear I will! I’ll sell you South!

    (Later, Prissy comes back alone. Scarlett has to
    find the doctor herself.)

    PRISSY
    Is the doctor coming?

    SCARLETT
    No, he can’t come.

    PRISSY
    Oh, Miss Scarlett, Miss Melanie bad off!

    SCARLETT
    He can’t come, there’s nobody to come. Prissy, you’ve
    got to manage without the doctor. I’ll help you.

    PRISSY
    Oh, lawdsy, Miss Scarlett!

    SCARLETT
    What is it?

    PRISSY
    Lawdsy, we’ve got to have a doctor! I don’t know
    nothing about birthing babies.

    SCARLETT
    What do you mean? You told me you knew everything
    about it!

    PRISSY
    I don’t know how can I tell such a lie. Ma ain’t
    never let me around when folks was having them.

    SCARLETT
    Go! Stop it! Go light a fire on the stove. Get
    boiling water in the kettle. Get me a ball of twine,
    and all the clean towels you can find, and, the
    scissors. And don’t come telling me you can’t find
    them. Go get them and get them quick!

    MAMMIE
    Miss Scarlettt? What are we going to do with nothing
    to feed them sick folks and that child?

    SCARLETT
    I don’t know Mammy. I don’t know.

    MAMMIE
    We ain’t got nothing but radishes in the garden.

    PRISSY
    Miss Scarlett, Miss Sue Ellen and Miss Corrine,
    They’s fussin to be sponged off.

    SCARLETT
    Where are the other servants Mammie?

    MAMMIE
    Miss Scarlett, there’s only just me and Paul left.
    The others moved off during the war and ran away.

    PRISSY
    I can’t take care of that baby and sick folks too.
    I’ve only got two hands.

    Clover/Prissy is put in her place by the authority of the state. I guess that’s the way she likes it, tho I don’t see why.

  24. Sometimes a single page (slight edit) can express my thoughts better that I could with a dozen. David, please read this several times. Then read the last paragraph several more until you grasp it.

    “Apologists are annoying in that they can often be anti-intellectual, but not always. Sometimes they’re quite intellectually capable even when their focus is very narrow. It can even take a while to realize you’re dealing with an apologist because many believers prefer to not express their beliefs openly. That is even more annoying because I can sense that the person is filtering everything they think, but it takes effort to realize they’re not actually open to new viewpoints. The most intelligent apologists have a knack for creating convoluted arguments and false herrrings.

    What is even worse is when they demand you defend your argument when they can’t defend their own. I’ve spent years studying religion, and it’s a complex field. Why would I want to deal with people who’ve only read very narrowly? Why would want to try to spoonfeed information to those who have no respect for knowledge? And apologists can be persistent, going around and around with the same tired ploys.

    Beyond all of that, what really annoys me is that apologists are very talented at perverting the truth. To me, truth is my faith. When someone uses rational logic falsely or deceptively, then it pisses me off. I just don’t understand how someone can act rationally while at the same time having little respect for rationality.

    I’m not criticizing faith. I’m all for faith, but faith and rationality are not the same thing. Rationality limited by unquestioned beliefs is not rational at all. Certainly, it’s acceptable for one’s faith to inform one’s rationality, but one is no longer in the realm of rationality when one’s rationality is limited to one’s faith. As such, rationality should also inform one’s faith. No belief should be held back from the gaze of curiosity, questioning, doubt and general intellectual inquiry. Also, I’d even go so far to say that faith without doubt is no faith at all.”

    From here : https://benjamindavidsteele.wordpress.com/2009/03/19/the-love-of-truth-vs-the-sophistry-of-apologetics/

  25. Hey, Clover,

    I think I’m gonna take a trip back to NY…..so I can go to the grave of those 2 pigs who were snuffed, and sing [to the tune of Jose Feliciano’s Feliz Navidad] “Police now-be-dead! Police now-be-dead….”

    • @Moleman- Would that be the Christian thing to do?

      Yikes… that even put shivers up my spine, and I don’t like the police at all. Two people dead and more likely than not in Hell. Is that something to celebrate?

  26. i think this one is closest to what I believe.

    What the world needs is not dogma but an attitude of scientific inquiry combined with a belief that the torture of millions is not desirable, whether inflicted by Stalin or by a Deity imagined in the likeness of the believer. – Bertrand Russell

    It’s fine to kill an intruder, rapist, murderer during the imminent threat. It is an unquestioned right even.

    But if he’s captured alive. Then the situation changes, if you have an inquiring scientific mind.

    Because every being has potential resource value. Has some kind of intrinsic value. Find out what makes man do the wrong things. Or at least put them at hard labor and let them produce for the useful portion of mankind.

    Any dogma that advocates blunt killing by the herd for revenge purposes is savage and anti-science. At least cage them up and do experiments on them.

    For the intelligent man, everything is a question, wrapped in a riddle, and hidden in an enigma.

    Any other system of using golden rules to classify evildoers, and set up elaborate etiquettes for identifying bad actors and good actors, and then propagating all the pomp and circumstance associated with this is anathema to the spirit of inquiry and the pursuit of knowledge.

    These are the primitive things that we must let go of, I am certain.

  27. Everything we can observe in some manner. Including starlight from billions of years ago is only 10%-15% of our universe.
    The only kind of matter we can perceive or conduct science on is 4.6% of the universe’s matter.
    So best case scenario, the big bang, evolution, all of our science is based on 0.7% of everything known to exist.

    Baryonic matter top ten in parts per million
    1 Hydrogen 739,000
    2 Helium 240,000
    8 Oxygen 10,400
    6 Carbon 4,600
    10 Neon 1,340
    26 Iron 1,090
    7 Nitrogen 960
    14 Silicon 650
    12 Magnesium 580
    16 Sulfur 440

    The elements – that is, every day ordinary(baryonic) matter made out of protons, neutrons, and electrons – is only a small part of the content of the Universe.

    Only 4.6% of the universe’s energy (including the mass contributed by energy, E = mc² ↔ m = E / c²) comprises the visible baryonic matter that constitutes stars, planets, and living beings.

    The rest of the universe is made up of dark energy (72%) and dark matter (23%). These latter forms of matter and energy are believed to exist on the basis of emerging theory and observational deductions. The details of thse are still the subject of research which is hardly even yet underway. These things are not yet directly observed, but only mathematically imputed based on high energy particle accelerator collision experiments, and not in the least bit very well understood at all.

    Most standard (baryonic) matter is found in stars and interstellar clouds, in the form of atoms or ions (plasma), although other unusual kinds of matter can be found in astrophysical settings, such as the high densities inside white dwarfs and neutron stars.

    Is there an intelligence causing the ordered baryonic matter that we observed emanating as the big bang. What of the majority dark energy. And the minority dark matter all around us and beyond our perception.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abundance_of_the_chemical_elements#Abundance_of_elements_in_the_Universe

    We are a distant third in the scheme of matter it would seem. And just one single world elliptically orbiting a single star out of 300 billion stars in a single galaxy which itself is a single galaxy amid 150 billion galaxies in the universe. A universe where over 95% percent of mass and energy we are so far unable to perceive.

  28. So what are we doing here? Is this a modern day sewing circle, following in the footsteps of antebellum high society ladies, sharing thoughts on slavery abolition and worldwide missionary work and concerns for creating a more just and moral society for all?

    Are we mainly in attendance to “chew the grease rag” and gossip about cars, bikes, guns, men’s rights, and the like.

    Or are we trying to become the spark. Trying to ignite a fire in our hearts. To bring forth a fearsome wind to fan the flames. And then to bring forth the quenching rains to douse that fire and keep it in check and well focused yet ready to unleash at our command.

    I mean, I’m no fellow learned obstetrician multi-millionaire here to hobnob with the Ron Pauls of the world. Not that I don’t admire him. I’m quite a few floors below his ivory tower, I can assure you.

    I might even be in the basement, below even the average hoi polloi out in the street wallowing in their sweet fecund muds of blissful thoughtless ignorance while electrified fences are built around them higher and higher.

    All I Want For Christmas Is A Fucking Revolution!

    What do we want for Christmas? What are our New Years Resolutions? What are our lunar new year spring festival aspirations as the unipolar solitary superpower goes back to sleep in yesteryears sunset and a new era dawns – 2015 the Year of the Green Wooden Ram?

  29. “Don’t work or be murdered Day.”

    ah hah ha ha ha ha ha haaa

    Luv it!

    “Geen werk of doodgemaak word die dag.””No trabajar o ser asesinado el día.””Sei nicht arbeiten oder ermordet Tag.””Ne pas travailler ou d’être assassiné Jour.””Non lavorare o essere Giornata assassinato.””Operamini non dies aut occidi.”

  30. Marshall Brain is most widely known as the founder of HowStuffWorks.com. He is also creator of web sites WhyWontGodHealAmputees.com ; GodIsImaginary.com ; and https://www.youtube.com/user/GIIVideo.

    Marshall Brain has reached millions of believers with his core message that God is imaginary. His signature question, “Why Won’t God Heal Amputees?” has become a common refrain that is heard any time believers and non-believers have a discussion or debate together. Brain has already helped thousands of believers use logic and critical thinking to recover from religion.

    In his new book How God Works, Brain’s goal is to take his proven approach to the next level, so that thousands more believers can prove to themselves that God is imaginary. “Once believers learn how to apply logic and critical thinking to their faith, their faith often collapses like a house of cards – there is no question that God and Allah are imaginary. People’s lives improve dramatically once they stop believing in, talking to and fearing imaginary beings.” notes Brain.

    http://howgodworks.com/about-marshall-brain/

    HOW DO WE KNOW THAT SANTA CLAUS IS IMAGINARY?
    BY MARSHALL BRAIN

    Do you believe that Santa Claus is real or imaginary?

    Except for a very small group of outliers, all adults know, with complete certainty, that Santa Claus is imaginary. These adults are not agnostic or uncertain about Santa’s status as an imaginary being. They know that Santa is imaginary.

    But how do they know this? How do you know it? Where does your certainty come from? If you take the time to think about it, you will realize that it’s because all of Santa’s well-known attributes are false. Here are four of Santa’s best known attributes:

    He lives at the North pole with Mrs. Claus and the workshop and all the elves.
    He comes down the chimney with a bag of toys.
    He delivers toys to all the good girls and boys around the world.
    He has a flying sleigh and eight magic reindeer.

    All of these positive claims may sound good to a child, but as we mature we realize that none of these attributes are true, and provably so. Santa does not live at the North Pole. Santa does not deliver toys to all the good girls and boys (many good children living in poverty receive nothing). And so on. Santa is obviously imaginary.

    So how do we prove that God, or any other god humans have imagined over the millenia, is imaginary? We use exactly the same techniques. We list the attributes and positive claims made for God, and then we use logic, science and critical thinking to prove that they are all false. The book How God Works is a fascinating guided tour through the whole process. After reading the book, you will know, with certainty, that God is imaginary.
    http://howgodworks.com/

  31. ― Richard Dawkins
    “We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.”

    “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

    “There is something infantile in the presumption that somebody else has a responsibility to give your life meaning and point. The truly adult view, by contrast, is that our life is as meaningful, as full and as wonderful as we choose to make it.”

    “One of the truly bad effects of religion is that it teaches us that it is a virtue to be satisfied with not understanding.”

    “A child is not a Christian child, not a Muslim child, but a child of Christian parents or a child of Muslim parents. This latter nomenclature, by the way, would be an excellent piece of consciousness-raising for the children themselves. A child who is told she is a ‘child of Muslim parents’ will immediately realize that religion is something for her to choose -or reject- when she becomes old enough to do so.”

    “Let children learn about different faiths, let them notice their incompatibility, and let them draw their own conclusions about the consequences of that incompatibility. As for whether they are ‘valid,’ let them make up their own minds when they are old enough to do so.”

    “To be fair, much of the Bible is not systematically evil but just plain weird, as you would expect of a chaotically cobbled-together anthology of disjointed documents, composed, revised, translated, distorted and ‘improved’ by hundreds of anonymous authors, editors and copyists, unknown to us and mostly unknown to each other, spanning nine centuries”

    “Do you really mean to tell me the only reason you try to be good is to gain God’s approval and reward, or to avoid his disapproval and punishment? That’s not morality, that’s just sucking up, apple-polishing, looking over your shoulder at the great surveillance camera in the sky, or the still small wiretap inside your head, monitoring your every move, even your every base though.”

    “Do not indoctrinate your children. Teach them how to think for themselves, how to evaluate evidence, and how to disagree with you.”

    “Faith can be very very dangerous, and deliberately to implant it into the vulnerable mind of an innocent child is a grievous wrong.”

    “I am thrilled to be alive at time when humanity is pushing against the limits of understanding. Even better, we may eventually discover that there are no limits.”

    “The take-home message is that we should blame religion itself, not religious extremism – as though that were some kind of terrible perversion of real, decent religion. Voltaire got it right long ago: ‘Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.’ So did Bertrand Russell: ‘Many people would sooner die than think. In fact they do.”

    “Indeed, organizing atheists has been compared to herding cats, because they tend to think independently and will not conform to authority. But a good first step would be to build up a critical mass of those willing to ‘come out,’ thereby encouraging others to do so. Even if they can’t be herded, cats in sufficient numbers can make a lot of noise and they cannot be ignored.”

    “Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, distinctly heard the voice of Jesus telling him to kill women, and he was locked up for life. George W. Bush says that God told him to invade Iraq (a pity God didn’t vouchsafe him a revelation that there were no weapons of mass destruction).”

    “The only watchmaker is the blind forces of physics.”

    “Isaac Asimov’s remark about the infantilism of pseudoscience is just as applicable to religion: ‘Inspect every piece of pseudoscience and you will find a security blanket, a thumb to suck, a skirt to hold.’ It is astonishing, moreover, how many people are unable to understand that ‘X is comforting’ does not imply ‘X is true’.”

    “I mean it as a compliment when I say that you could almost define a philosopher as someone who won’t take common sense for an answer.”

    “If all the evidence in the universe turned in favour of creationism, I would be the first to admit it, and I would immediately change my mind. As things stand, however, all available evidence (and there is a vast amount of it) favours evolution.”

    “God is a vindictive bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser , a misogynistic, homophobic racist, an infanticidal, genocidal, phillicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

    “Let us remind ourselves of the terminology. A theist believes in a supernatural intelligence who, in addition to his main work of creating the universe in the first place, is still around to oversee and influence the subsequent fate of his initial creation. In many theistic belief systems, the deity is intimately involved in human affairs. He answers prayers; forgives or punishes sins; intervenes in the world by performing miracles; frets about good and bad deeds, and knows when we do them (or even think about doing them). A deist, too, believes in a supernatural intelligence, but one whose activities were confined to setting up the laws that govern the universe in the first place. The deist God never intervenes thereafter, and certainly has no specific interest in human affairs. Pantheists don’t believe in a supernatural God at all, but use the word God as a non-supernatural synonym for Nature, or for the Universe, or for the lawfulness that governs its workings. Deists differ from theists in that their God does not answer prayers, is not interested in sins or confessions, does not read our thoughts and does not intervene with capricious miracles. Deists differ from pantheists in that the deist God is some kind of cosmic intelligence, rather than the pantheist’s metaphoric or poetic synonym for the laws of the universe. Pantheism is sexed-up atheism. Deism is watered-down theism.”

    “Creationists eagerly seek a gap in present-day knowledge or understanding. If an apparent gap is found, it is assumed that God, by default, must fill it.”

    “A god who is capable of sending intelligible signals to millions of people simultaneously, and of receiving messages from all of them simultaneously, cannot be, whatever else he might be, simple. Such Bandwidth!”

    “If you don’t understand how something works, never mind: just give up and say God did it. You don’t know how the nerve impulse works? Good! You don’t understand how memories are laid down in the brain? Excellent! Is photosynthesis a bafflingly complex process? Wonderful! Please don’t go
    to work on the problem, just give up, and appeal to God.”

    “Jesus was not content to derive his ethics from the scriptures of his upbringing. He explicitly departed from them. Since a principal thesis of this chapter is that we do not, and should not, derive our morals from scripture, Jesus has to be honoured as a model for that very thesis.”

    “Though the details differ across the world, no known culture lacks some version of the time-consuming, wealth consuming, hostility provoking rituals, the anti-factual, counter-productive fantasies of religion.”

    “The atheist view is correspondingly life-affirming and life-enhancing, while at the same time never being tainted with self-delusion, wishful thinking, or the whingeing self-pity of those who feel that life owes them something.”

    “Do those people who hold up the Bible as an inspiration to moral rectitude have the slightest notion of what is actually written in it?”
    ― Richard Dawkins

      • Going one God more. That’s the one of Dawkins that gets me the most. For me, the man’s role is to be the rational actor in a given situation.

        Irrationalism is a luxury. Unless you’re doing well, it’s more appropriate to women, children, and dependents, not the Head of Household in decision making mode. In family conference mode, it may have its place regardless of your station.

        If being religious doesn’t impair your rationality, then I’d say its no problem for you. But if it starts to offend ye, or your ability to make good decisions, then cast it out.

        Indulging in religion seems similar to reading fiction, listening to music, and day dreaming. Nothing wrong with those acts. For many they’re part of the good life. Absolutely, Christianity can be part of their notion of “the good life.”

        I would counsel, but not insist, that religion shouldn’t be the bedrock of a man’s life unless of course everything is according to his satisfaction. To put it bluntly, it’s unmanly to blame invisible beings for your own failings, IMHO.

        I’ve asked myself why is it humans require 8 hours of sleep. This time helps us summarize and assimilate what we learned and accomplished for the day.

        The most important part of sleep is in the form of irrational dreaming with REM. Perhaps the importance of dreams make as good a case as any for something like Christianity having a valid role in a well tempered thought organ.

        My wife believes her dead relatives are in Heaven, and I see no call to disabuse her of that notion. On the contrary, it seems those with just the right amount of irrationalism, including most women, outcompete pure rationalists in the long run.

        Think about it, women get over on men all the time, yet they nearly always adhere to the NAP at least as an individual. (they do seem comfortable with violating the NAP via proxy thugs in authority, sadly)

        The UK seems to integrate religion and secularism quite well. There is no strict separation of church and state in the United Kingdom. Public officials in their system of 2.2 billion souls may display the most common identifiers of major religions during the course of their duties.

        The UK seems far preferable to the US or EU as of late.

        In the case of the U.S., there seems to be sociopathic ineptitude in integrating any two things at a level much above a toddlers’ ability.

        Any two things that aren’t absolutely cut and dried to the most minute specifications of ideological purity simply aren’t tolerated. Better to prohibit and forbid everything, just to be consistent.

        Of course that might be because the U.S. is little more than an upscale North Korean dystopia at this point.

        World adherents by religion
        http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/60/Worldwide_percentage_of_Adherents_by_Religion.png

  32. http://i.imgur.com/1w7WZMI.jpg Violinist Lindsay Stirling offered her skills in exchange for money. And over time she became more popular, her audiences grew larger and her monetary rewards increased in proportion to her success.

    Money is just away of showing someone that we value them. It is morally neutral. It flows from here to there much like water does. Do not the rains fall on the just and the unjust alike?
    http://www.ticketmaster.com/Lindsey-Stirling-tickets/artist/1726690

    Rain is not immoral when it falls on an immoral person. It is just condensed atmospheric precipitation. Neither is money when it is provided to an immoral person.

    The question to be asked. Is how did money become corrupted. Perhaps they will someday corrupt the rain as well. It will only fall on whoever pays the cloud seeding rainmakers. Every other day, the cloud prohibitors will stop the rain and keep it in the sky until they allow it to fall.

    We earn money because it provides the things we need to live. And then a little something extra. What is immoral is so many nations are not being paid for their exports. America leaves them holding the bag. A bag of impotent rag paper. That is what is immoral. That is the sin that has become more and more commonplace. Starting with prohibition and all the other schemes designed to wipe out all forms of trade except the paper currency of the PTB.

    Immorality has taken hold, because no one is allowed to square things, and settle up with everyone. Everyone is kept in debt slavery to everyone else. That is how they maximize there power and control.

    Maybe I’m am just repeating myself. I think we’re on the same page. We know that most people produce for the joy of being useful and of feeling valued by others. The money is only ancillary after a certain point.

    It is only the state that spends on things no one wants. They are so much more immoral than individuals. Its hardly worth worrying about individual immorality in the face of their immense evil.

  33. The History of No-Fault Divorces

    NFD’s are the sinister brainchildren of the ULC, formerly known as the “National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws.”

    All ULC members are lawyers, who may also serve as legislators, judges, or legal scholars. Each is appointed to the Commission by the government of their respective state or territory.

    California was the first U.S. State to adopt what are now called ‘no-fault’ divorces in the United States in 1969. California’s law was framed on an earlier and roughly contemporaneous effort, of the non-governmental organization, National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, which began drafting a model of no-fault divorce statute for states to consider in 1967.

    The earliest precedent in no-fault divorce laws was originally enacted in Russia shortly after the Bolshevik Revolution. They were legislated in the series of decrees that issued in early 1918. The decrees included nonjudicial dissolution of marriage by either party and mandatory provision of child-support.

    The purpose of the Soviet no-fault divorce laws was ideological, intended to revolutionize society at every level. They were the subject of significant revisional efforts from World War II to the 1960s.

    Major revisions were concluded in 1968. The Soviet 1968 and California 1969 no-fault divorce laws bore many detailed similarities of terminology, substance, and procedure.

    In the 1925 Soviet conference to draft the Family Law of 1926, people debated whether marriages should even be registered. Nikolai Krylenko, a chief architect of the Soviet law of marriage and leading theorist of “socialist legality” in the 1920s and 1930s, described the purpose of divorce without restraint as a step toward the ultimate goal of the abolition of marriage, thereby establishing the socialist transformation of society.

    “Of course, if living together and not registration is taken as the test of a married state, polygamy and polyandry may exist; but the State can’t put up any barriers against this.

    Free love is the ultimate aim of a socialist State; in that State marriage will be free from any kind of obligation, including economic, and will turn into an absolutely free union of two beings. Meanwhile, though our aim is the free union, we must recognize that marriage involves certain economic responsibilities, and that’s why the law takes upon itself the defense of the weaker partner, from the economic standpoint.”

  34. Money, Power and Politics – Stef Molyneux 29 min

    If you want to understand everything that’s wrong with the Western World, just watch this video.

    Everything we’re discussing is important. But it’s all just effects.

    The cause of all our problems is the rise of unlimited money creation power by the states. WWI was the first war that raged for years on end because the beligerent govts didn’t run out of money.

    They destroyed the gold standard with that war, and we still haven’t recovered a century later.

    Already, 40% of the wealth of the United States citizens has been destroyed. If we could even slow it down, then China’s rebuilding of the Silk Road, its digging of a new canal, and all the other exciting productive activities underway in the world can start to turn things around.

    Until this unlimited source of tyranny is brought to heel, or ended entirely, nothing we do is going to regain the world we so recently lost.

    • Money isn’t the problem, either, Tor- it is just another symptom. The real problem is unbridled human-nature. Human-nature, if left to pursue it’s greed; hedonism; and lust, without the constraints of morality, just leads to animalistic behavior; or voluntarily serving those who offer protection from such or who claim to keep you from from becoming such by adhering to their dogma/system.

      • So humans benefit from being bridled?
        And humans due to their flawed nature must not be left to pursue things in an open and free manner?

        Those things sound like the cause of our present misery.

        The flimflam charlatan mystics of muscle and spirit.

        Human nature isn’t perfect. But over time, and given sufficient opportunity, good will prevail and things will improve incrementally due to the phenomenon of spontaneous order.

        You’re presenting the old statist canard. That man’s nature is inherently evil.

        If there’s one thing that’s abundantly clear to anyone with a modicum of sanity and functioning senses.

        That no human is born evil. Never at no time has there been born a baby destined to be evil.

        Always it is the case that each baby must be educated and steeped in the methods and mores of evil. To say otherwise is absolutely ludicrous. Extremely evil and misguided.
        – – –

        Money and its equivalent is found everywhere in nature. It is present in any interaction between two beings, where one being exchanges value with another being. It is no more good or evil than is the wind, the sand, or the waves.

        Money in a human context is the tool of men who have reached a high level of productivity and a long-range control over their lives. Money is not merely a tool of exchange for humanity: much more importantly, it is a tool of saving, which permits delayed consumption and buys time for future production.

        To fulfill this requirement, money has to be some material commodity which is imperishable, rare, homogeneous, easily stored, not subject to wide fluctuations of value, and always in demand among those you trade with.

        It was these criteria that led to the decision to use the commodity of gold as money. Gold money is a tangible value in itself and a token of wealth actually produced. When you accept a gold coin in payment for your goods, you actually deliver the goods to the buyer; the transaction is as safe as simple barter.

        When you store your savings in the form of gold coins, they represent the goods which you have actually produced and which have gone to buy time for other producers, who will keep the productive process going, so that you’ll be able to trade your coins for goods any time you wish.

        Money cannot function as money, i.e., as a medium of exchange, unless it is backed by actual, unconsumed goods. We talk of so much craziness because we have lived for so long in a world without real money.

        For those who think that money is the root of all evil. I would ask – have you ever asked what is the root of money? Money is a tool of exchange, which can’t exist unless there are goods produced and men able to produce them.

        Money is the material shape of the principle that men who wish to deal with one another must deal by trade and give value for value. Money is not the tool of the moochers, who claim your product by tears, or of the looters, who take it from you by force. Money is made possible only by the men who produce. Is it this productive effort that you consider evil? How so?

        When you accept money in payment for your effort, you do so only on the conviction that you will exchange it for the product of the effort of others. It is not the moochers or the looters who give value to money. Not an ocean of tears nor all the guns in the world can transform those pieces of paper in your wallet into the bread you will need to survive tomorrow.

        Those pieces of paper, which should have been gold, are a token of honor—your claim upon the energy of the men who produce. Your wallet is your statement of hope that somewhere in the world around you there are men who will not default on that moral principle which is the root of money. Is this what you consider evil?

        Have you ever looked for the root of production? Take a look at an electric generator and dare tell yourself that it was created by the muscular effort of unthinking brutes. Try to grow a seed of wheat without the knowledge left to you by men who had to discover it for the first time. Try to obtain your food by means of nothing but physical motions—and you’ll learn that man’s mind is the root of all the goods produced and of all the wealth that has ever existed on earth.

        But you say that money is made by the strong at the expense of the weak? What strength do you mean? It is not the strength of guns or muscles. Wealth is the product of man’s capacity to think.

        Then is money made by the man who invents a motor at the expense of those who did not invent it? Is money made by the intelligent at the expense of the fools? By the able at the expense of the incompetent? By the ambitious at the expense of the lazy? Money is made—before it can be looted or mooched—made by the effort of every honest man, each to the extent of his ability. An honest man is one who knows that he can’t consume more than he has produced.

        Money rests on the axiom that every man is the owner of his mind and his effort. Money allows no power to prescribe the value of your effort except the voluntary choice of the man who is willing to trade you his effort in return. Money permits you to obtain for your goods and your labor that which they are worth to the men who buy them, but no more. Money permits no deals except those to mutual benefit by the unforced judgment of the traders.

        So long as men live together on earth and need means to deal with one another—their only substitute, if they abandon money, is the muzzle of a gun.

        Most people lump together into the same category all men who become rich, refusing to consider the essential question: the source of the riches, the means by which the wealth was acquired.

        Money is a tool of exchange; it represents wealth only so long as it can be traded for material goods and services. Wealth does not grow in nature; it has to be produced by men. Nature gives us only the raw materials, but it is man’s mind that has to discover the knowledge of how to use them. It is man’s thinking and labor that transform the materials into food, clothing, shelter or television sets—into all the goods that men require for their survival, comfort and pleasure.

        Behind every step of humanity’s long climb from the cave to London, Paris, and New York City, there is the man who took that step for the first time—the man who discovered how to make a fire or a wheel or an airplane or an electric light.

        When people refuse to consider the source of wealth, what they refuse to recognize is the fact that wealth is the product of man’s intellect, of his creative ability, fully as much as is art, science, philosophy or any other human value.

        Money is a great power—because, in a free or even a semi-free society, it is a frozen form of productive energy. And, therefore, the spending of money is a grave responsibility. Contrary to the altruists and the advocates of the so-called “academic freedom,” it is a moral crime to give money to support ideas with which you disagree; it means: ideas which you consider wrong, false, evil. It is a moral crime to give money to support your own destroyers.

        Sadly, it sounds as though you believe removing money and all the accumulated wealth of generations of man will somehow make us more moral. That the answer is to return to the primitive state and muck about in the forest like mere beasts without such evil as money and all the rest.

        That is why I question whether religion has ever offered anything of net constructive value to human life.

        In the sense of blind belief, belief unsupported by, or contrary to, the facts of reality and the conclusions of reason. Faith, as such, is extremely detrimental to human life: it is the negation of reason.

        The only useful kind of religion is not blind unreasoning belief, but rather religion as an early form of philosophy, as the first ancient attempt to explain the universe, to give a coherent frame of reference to man’s life and a code of moral values.

        Those were originally made by religion, before men graduated or developed enough to have philosophy. And, as philosophies, some religions have very valuable moral points. They may have a good influence or proper principles to inculcate, but in a very contradictory context and are potentially catastrophically dangerous and malevolent: whenever they operate solely on the ground of faith.

        Christ, in terms of the Christian philosophy, is the human ideal. He personifies that which men should strive to emulate. But somehow his message was garbled and gotten wrong. Especially by Saul of Tarsus.

        According to the Christian mythology, he died on the cross not for his own sins but for the sins of the non-ideal people. In other words, a man of perfect virtue was sacrificed for men who are vicious and who are expected or supposed to accept that sacrifice.

        Nothing should make a Christian more indignant than that: the notion of sacrificing the ideal man to the non-ideal such as Paul of Tarsus. The sacrifice of virtue to vice.

        It is in the name of that symbol that men are asked to sacrifice themselves for their inferiors. That is precisely how the symbolism is used.

        We sacrifice for our children, because we hope they will someday they will be better than us. We don’t sacrifice and then celebrate our sacrifice because our children our sinful irredeemably evil beings who will never be as good as us. How can it ever be, that the created don’t all have the possibility of exceeding their creators?

        A God whose creation isn’t meant to someday surpass him and do far better than he ever could is no God at all.

        • No, Tor, you misunderstand: I meant SELF-BRIDLED, by the pursuit of morality; seeking the good of others; humility; etc. NOT bridled coercively by others, because THAT is the very thing which harnesses the evils of human-nature, and turns it to their own cuases.

          This is why in the past, when more people practiced at least some vestige of Christian morality, we had a more peaceful and freer society- because people bridled their baser appetites. Once liberalism got a strong foot-hold in the 60’s, the majority started unabashedly pursuing whatever felt good to them, without thought to the consequences of their actions and their effects on others- and then we in-turn got a paradigm which decreed that the state needed to fill the void left by the abandonment of Christian morality- so they filled that void with legislation which covers every aspect of life; and with surveillance and force to try and mitigate the effects of a people who now know no restraint other than the stae’s decrees.

          • Sorry, I shouldn’t put words in your mouth. I should just make general statements based on your ideas, and not try to bring yours or my beliefs into the conversation.

            Of course the only thing that works is reigning in our unlimited wants, because the world provides only scarce goods and services. But that is no reason to make things any scarcer than they need to be.

            In one poor country, cocaine is produced for $700 per kilogram. Then in the rich country like ours, that same commodity sells for $100,000 per kilogram.

            This arrangement makes one group of hostages dependent on another group of hostages. This makes the most important thing in the world, to be these unnatural dams, which pit one group against another. Who dam up one tribe of people and use them for energy, as they try to interact with the other tribe of people in different circumstances on the other side of the artificial border.

            How is there going to be any reasonable moral arrangement when such unbalanced realities are maintained by the lunatic PTB?

            There is little to no reward for virtue these days, as there was in the times of honest money. And of fair dealing.

            Every whim that increases individual indebtedness to the system has nearly unlimited funding. If we had to pay as we go, we would all act much more sensibly and moral, on this we can agree.

            But there is only Kafka’s gatekeeper presented to those who wish to live within their means and live small honest lives. They find themselves isolated and in near starvation.

            All their lives, we are told: we can not have this just yet. Wait and it will come to you. And at last we die waiting for the good old Christian/Babylonian/Egyptian whatever old times we’d like to enjoy.

            What we need is a $500 vehicle to get us from A to B. But that will not be allowed. Instead we must each go years into debt to buy a $30,000 vehicle with all manner of rube goldberg silliness. I mean none of the so called options would be paid for if we had the option to forgo nearly all of it, and live as solvent sovereign men with dignity.

            But that is not possible. There is nowhere left that allows trading value for value. There is We are like the Native Americans who have been removed from the lives they knew how to live. And we sit about as they did in a zoo like existence. Fire water. Television. Empty consumerism. None of it is what we’d truly like to be doing. We are strangers in our own land, not allowed to form the societies we’d truly want without their interference.

            But the men with the forked tongues have bested us. They have destroyed our honest wampum. For every honest dollar a mechanic might earn working on a car, ten more dishonest dollars are demonically manifested through fractional reserve debt slavery bad medicine.

            Prohibition. Progressivism. World wars against the interior Europeans by the seafaring multinational Europeans. The cold war. Welfare collectivism. The rise of the emptyheaded manchildren and the fall of the wisdom of the old, the capable, and the successful.

            The petrodollar farce stacked on top of the central bank farce. Debts upon debts. Defaults. Spending before earning. IOUs written in our name without our consent for endless wars of plunder. And against every vestige of non-enslaved men not yet captured and added to the matrix grid of mailing addresses, phone lines, utilities, and taxpayer IDs.

            It all starts with something like PayPal. Or bitcoin. Or trading bales of cotton, or tobacco. Of getting back to the basics of milleniums or yore. It starts with rejecting everything that now exists. Even rejecting most of our own histories we think we remember.

            There is only an objective now. That is where we can start. There is no long pattern. Or hopeless cycle. We can let go of all that and start fresh.

            There is just you, who can do A, B, and C to earn J,K, and L.
            And there is me who can do R,S, and T to earn X, Y, and Z.
            And together you trade me a J for two Xs. And I promise to provide five Js this spring, if you’ll give me an L right now.

            Honest straightforward production and commerce. Pure division of labor without all the mental baggage of which letters are good and which are evil. But only the objective reality that these are the goods, services, and system of tokens that we can each use to enrich each other and make this world a place of harmony. One moral transaction at a time. With true money, unburdened by any hidden mechanism or ulterior enslavement motives.

  35. If my neighbor were a pig, I’d move. Seriously. You can’t win. If you’re friends with a pig, it will come back to bite you (Even if it seems like being friends with them would be advantageous)- and especially so once they fully understand your libertarian views. And if you’re not friends with them, you risk snubbing them, or raising their suspicions (Like: “Oh, that guy nextdoor supports legalizing drugs; he must be a druggie!”)- Nothing good ever becomes of any interaction with stinking pigs. They are immoral bastards who do nothing but create trouble, violence and injustice.

    And how could you even tolerate being friendly with someone who is a professional liar (Cops can’t get through one day without lying profusely); and so morally bankrupt that he will gladly use violence to enforce the states decrees?

    All cops are my enemy. They are our most clear and present enemy- the matrix without which the police state would have no power to commit it’s crimes; Men who have become adept at switching off their consciences, and who will use violence as a tool, merely because they are commanded to do so; mercenaries; the most evil creatures on this earth.

    Nothing good can ever come by having anything to do with such fiends.

    • I hate to be that guy who says “the guy I know is different” but its sort of true. He is (in general) the most gracious person I know and the most active in church. He doesn’t strike me as the type who would take any chance he gets to defend the police state.

      That said, I am still sympathetic to what you say here. I still live with my family so “move” isn’t an option. As a general rule I don’t think I’d be the type to actively seek out friendships with police. I generally find the hardline police state supporters frustrating and I don’t usually prefer talking to them. I do make exceptions for my own family of course, but even then I prefer not to debate politics with some of them because they are so frustrating (and note: these are not cops, these are civilians.)

      Just for curiosity, what’s your advice for when there are cops in your church? Please something other than “be irreligious” because I am definitely not doing that. Sorry.

      Regarding “fully understood libertarian views” I think it depends on who’s libertarian views we’re talking about for one thing. The guy I know who’s a cop knows I’m an “anarchist” and that I don’t believe in government. I’ve never attacked him for his job, but I think he knows I’m not a fan of “the police.” He does think I’m kind of crazy, but only for the same reasons most other people think anarchists are crazy, and he’s not as bad as some people with regards to that. I know civilians who are FAR more hostile than he is.

      Now, if I were (I’m not) to take a Cantwell type position that its OK to shoot police on sight, yeah, I suspect he’d have a problem with that. But then, so would everyone else. If someone takes that type of a libertarian position, than I’d probably say that discussing that not only with cops is probably fruitless, but also that discussing it with cop SUPPORTERS is likely to create issues as well. Heck, even other an-caps have issues with that kind of stuff (speaking for me, I’m pretty much willing to discuss anything, and I do “get” where people like Cantwell are coming from, but I don’t go as far as they do, in part because of my faith.)

      • David said: “Just for curiosity, what’s your advice for when there are cops in your church?”

        The same as it would be for any church that allowed practicing queers; adulterers; or hit-men to be members. If we, as church members are supposed to be representatives of God’s government, how could we at the same time be enforcing the contrary dictates of the anti-God government? (And clearly, all governments today are diametrically opposed to God’s laws/justice).

        A cop is a person who commitsd crimes against God’s law, in the name of the state. God doesn’t care that he has a badge and a gun, and the authority of men- when he breaks into someone’s home or hauls someone off to the can for that which is not a violation of God’s laws, he is a criminal (Robber; kidnapper; murderer; assaulter…).

        Hey, what can we expect though, in this day when half the pastors are aligned with FEMA and gladly turn their flocks into docile obedient Beast-worshipers?

          • Clover, do you know who Arthur Harris was?

            I’ll educate you. He was the Brit who ordered the fire bombing of German cities for the purpose – openly stated – of terrorizing the German civilian population. When asked about it, he said: The Germans sowed the wind; let them now reap the whirlwind.

            Do you agree with what “Bomber” Harris did?

            And if the answer is yes, perhaps you’ll begin to understand why what happened in NY happened.

            • Tell me one thing Eric, do you deserve to be shot because another author did something wrong or something that hurt another person?

              Eric your kind is a danger to our society. You have mental problems and are are trying to spread hatred where there should not be any.Clover

              Do you think your neighbor, who helps others and is a cop, should be killed because a cop in Missouri was defending himself? Eric your kind is what we need to worry about it is not the police.

              • Clover, one of the first things that comes to my mind when I see something happen to any state functionary is “What did they do to deserve it?” One reaps what one sows. If one makes their living with the sword (or Glock in this case), is it not reasonable for them to expect that they may perish by the sword? Don’t get me wrong, I understand that sometimes bad things happen to good people. But as a general rule, if you have serious problems in your life, the source of those problems can almost invariably be found in the nearest mirror.

                The Virginia state trooper that repeatedly harassed my sister and me due to pure racism (along with enough other folks that he was moved to a new area), got mowed down on the side of the road by an 83 year old man. That trooper had some pretty suspicious financial arrangements for a $45K a year functionary. Coincidence that he was run over at 46 years old? I think not. Karma, l suspect.

                And no Clover, the kind of people we have to worry about are not folks like Eric or me who embrace the NAP (which has been explained to you to the point of distraction). It those like you who embrace coercion and ultimately violence by their state functionary surrogates in an effort to impose your will on the rest of us. It was to make this approach sufficiently costly to the likes of you, that the “Right” was enshrined in the Second Amendment. This is why you hate it; your ilk prefers unarmed victims. Your kith and kin along with your precious state are the real criminals and terrorists; history bears this out.

              • Clover – You said,”Do you think your neighbor, who helps others and is a cop,” But you’ve already contradicted yourself. The man is a cop – therefore he does NOT help others, only himself and the gunvermin.

              • Clover, I couldn’t agree more. Eric and the rest of us libertarians ARE a danger to your “society.” And you should worry.

                Your ability to harm, control and rob people through your government is diminishing as freedom’s message spreads through websites like this one.

                The day is coming when mealy-mouthed little government yes-men like you will lose. You’ll fall. And great shall be the fall thereof.

                • Well-said, Scottsco!

                  It’s funny: Statists like Clover try and use supposed philanthropy to justify their nefarious machinations in support of force and tyranny- not that they still don’t try to do that; but now, their beloved state has become so violent and so harmful to citizen’s finances, well-being and liberty, that it’s nearly impossible for these jerks to maintain their philanthropic facade- and thus,k the truth (as you eloquently stated) becomes much more obvious- that their real motive in supporting the criminal state at all costs, is their own greed and benefit; They could care less about anyone else in reality; they support the criminal extortioners-in-office because THEY want it to be able to maintain giving THEM the things that they are accustomed to having and have become used to having, no matter what it costs anyone else in terms of money; liberty or even life itself- all is well, as long as they “get theirs”…..until such time as they or someone they loved is victimized- then there is a chance that they may get a clue. (and even then, they usually just chock it up to “the price we have to pay”- like the spoils of war…)

                  • CloverMoleman our government was created a couple of hundred years ago. It looks like the government that was formed worked. When we as a society have to deal with jerks like you that say that it is OK to drive drunk, OK to drive in a reckless manner, OK to punch a cop out or someone else etc. it seems to me that it is you that is harming the liberties of others. It is you that is not following how our country was formed or the country that you were born into. It seems to me that it is you that should change or leave.

                    • Clover… really? Again?

                      Show me – please – even one example of anyone here defending impaired driving (whether by alcohol or senility or – as in your case – ineptitude).

                      Just one.

                      The fact that you can’t (or won’t) deal directly with the arguments made here – that subjecting innocent people to random criminal investigations absent any individual grounds for suspecting they’ve done a got-damned thing is wrong and un-American; that having “x” BAC does not necessarily mean an individual is “drunk”; that people vary greatly in ability/skill/experience; that a person’s actual driving ought to be the decisive factor; that if the person’s not driving erratically, hasn’t wrecked, then it’s pretty got-damned solid evidence they’re ok to drive … and instead, condemn what no one here has ever defended – “driving drunk, driving in a reckless manner,” etc. – only shows you’re both desperate and a liar. That you have no substantive points to make.

                      Poor ol’ Clover!

                    • eric, every time I see this same argument, ok, discussion, since clover can’t argue, I think of the opening scene in Las Vegas Vacation where the biggest clover of all, Chevy Chase nearly kills a couple dozen people and has no clue. Not a BAD guy, simply clueless. At least he doesn’t advocate charging everyone for his damages.

                    • Eric you are one of the most stupid persons alive! You say a drunk should not be stopped until they are driving erratically? Eric you have to be totally plastard to drive erratically all the way down the road. Drinking negatively affects decision making and reflexes far before you drive erratically all the way down the road. Those types of things are what usually causes the accidents. Clover
                      Eric until you have 4 or 5 drinks and drive let us say a riding lawn mower and see how you do. Eric I know many motorcyclists that never drink before they are riding because they know it can kill them even after a couple of drinks. Eric I can not help it that you pull statements out of your ass without any facts to back them up.

                    • No, Clover –

                      I “say” people should not have to prove the aren’t “drunk” absent any evidence that they might be. You know. Kind of like people aren’t (yet) forced to prove they haven’t killed anyone before they’re the subject of a random, probable cause-free murder investigation.

                      How many times must I repeat this? And will you ever respond to what actually write rather than to your own made-up accusations?

                • What do you call the bratty little publik-skewl-parasite Liberals/Socialists after the economic collapse? Bio-fuel feedstock 🙂

              • Clover, it is Christmas time and while this time of year replaces an even older pagan festival we are to consider Jesus Christ. Now we won’t deal with his murder until spring time, but when we strip off the religious stuff what was Jesus and why was he murdered?

                Jesus opposed the welfare/warfare state of his time, The Roman Empire. He preached the non-aggression principle, he preached people helping each, he preached what is really a libertarian message of voluntary society.

                Two thousand plus years later the philosophical conflict of humanity is still the same. You’ve chosen the side of the state, the side of those who seek to rule and live off others. Your kind indeed considers these ideas a threat to your way of life. Fear, force, murder, violence, war, torture, and worse (like the manipulation of the minds of children) has preserved your desired way of life for over two thousand years. It’s long over due to end and it must end sooner or later because it is unsustainable, even if that end is the end of humanity. It is the end of humanity that is the ultimate expression of the state. The parasite destroys everything.

                • Very well said, BrentP.
                  1 minor niggle – if you go back past the Roman Empire, through the Macedonian, to the Medo-Persian and Babylonian Empires, it’s been more like 3K years, or even more.
                  And the story of the Tower of Babel tells what God thinks of man’s grand master plans.
                  I like Psalm 2 – Why do the nations rage, and the peoples plot a vain thing? He who sits in the heavens laughs.
                  It may be a long haul, as Scottscobig says, but the day IS coming. None of us may still be here to see it, but it is coming.

                • Exactly, Brent!

                  In essence, it was the Clovers who killed Christ (Only back then, a lot of Clovers were Jewish! 😀 )

                  John 11:48 “If we let him thus alone, all [men] will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation. ”

                  Isn’t that just pure Cloverism?! It’s like they were saying “This Guy, even if He is the Messiah, if we do what He says, we’ll lose our ObamaNerocare and our interstate highway funds; and our bath-houses; and the Colosseum; and those wonderful centurions who protect us so well from bandits and drunk chariot drivers! Oy, Muffey! Let’s get our god; the one we really worship- Rome- to kill Him!”

                • CloverBrent in a good world we would not need police. In a good world we would not have 260 lb guys punching out a policeman. In a good world we would have no drunks. In a good world we would not have guys like you with road rage driving on our roads. In a good world we would not have robberies. In a good world we would not have a Putin. Yes Brent until you and others improve the people you are then I am all for having police. We do not want guys with rage when someone passes or blocking them to have your own untrained retaliation. Brent I am all for non-aggression. If you and your other jerks in our country would leave then we would not need any. Non e of the people that I know have been bothered by the police because we are not jerks like you and your friends.

                  • Clover,

                    You ought to update your lexicon. They’re not “policemen” any longer (much less “nice policemen”). They are law enforcement officers. This is their preferred honorific.

                    You might give some thought to what it implies.

                    • Clover must have been cloned in a Monsanto lab somewhere. So bloodless. Soulless. Thousands of posts here, but not one of them has even a drop of humanity or hint of life in it.

                      Clover utterly fails the turing test. An invisible non-being. A shadow. An echo. No emotions or feelings. Just a fluttering moth, attracted to the light and warmth of anyone real in an attempt to fill his endless empty void of non-existence.

                    • Right you are, Tor!

                      He’s dark matter. The anti-life equation (apologies to Abraxas, Defender of the Universe). An odd confabulation of neurotic risk-aversion and belligerence; the coward who worships violence.

                      If anything can be said in his defense, it is that he can’t help being unintelligent. The low-mediocrity of his mind is obvious. But it’s not fixable. Expecting him to rise above his own capacity – and becoming angry when he fails to do so – is not unlike becoming angry when your black lab continues to jump on the sofa.

                  • Clover, please put down the crackpipe. Your rambling reply has nothing to do with what you replied to. While you’re at it, turn off the TV news, just as bad as crack with regard to understanding what’s going on in the world.

                    • I’ve concluded Clover’s simply on the low-normal side of the Bell Curve.

                      Its brain is unable to grapple with difficult extrapolations, such as:

                      If it’s reasonable to randomly stop people and force them to prove they aren’t “dangerous drunks” then – surely – it’s just as reasonable to randomly subject people to questioning and searches to make sure they’re not murderers, rapists and so on.

                      Its brain can’t fine-tune distinctions that are obvious to those with IQs not mired in the double digits.

                      It is unable to define its terms, operating instead on its own fluid and subjective definitions, which are all predicated on what it calls “common sense”… which amounts to: Clover’s feelings and prejudices.

                      I entertain no hope of reaching him because it’s hopeless, like attempting to have a chat about fluid dynamics with a duck.

                      But, I beat the proverbial pinata (as you do) for the sake of illuminating Clover’s idiocies for the edification of others.

            • Eric, please don’t tell me that “yes” is the answer you are looking for here?

              I’m not sure what you’re trying to catch clover on here, but it seems that a decent person could not agree with “bomber” Harris on that…

              • I’m with Kurt Vonnegut and against Bomber Harris myself. Vonnegut was a prisoner in Dresden during Harris’ firebombing civil holocaust of the citizens there.

                It’s people like Harris that convince me their was no moral side in WWI or WWII. Just banksters destroying everyone’s wealth and property so they can make even more money and gain even more power.

                “You guys(Bomber Harris et. al.) burnt the place down, turned Dresden into a single column of flame. More people died there in the firestorm, in that one big flame, than died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined.” –Kurt Vonnegut.
                http://www.rense.com/general19/flame.htm

                The sheeple never stop to think about the economic slavery that comes because of war. Especially for the so called victors. With every war of the last 100 years, the winners find themselves deeper and deeper in insolvency and utter economic ruin.

                Thought you might find this interesting:

                A Calvinist Biblical Defense of Anarcho-Capitalism

                Anarcho-Calvinist Thesis:

                “Governments committed, subsidized, or legalized the murder of 10,000 people per day during the 20th century, with plans to dramatically escalate the killing in the 21st.

                Trillions of dollars of wealth have been confiscated or destroyed by governments during the 20th century.

                Governments have been the single greatest source of declining Christian morality in our world.

                Doesn’t the Bible forbid men from forming or participating in such institutions?”

                  • More sites by Kevin Craig…

                    The Christmas Conspiracy! is neither an escape from society nor is it violent or evil.

                    It is, however, potentially illegal.

                    The Christmas Conspiracy! is a movement of Christians whose allegiance to the Christmas King and His Scriptures is greater than their allegiance to any earthly king, president, constitution or dictator. We repudiate violent revolution, yet we are the greatest threat to “the government,” “the New World Order,” or “the establishment.”

                    Our goal is to overthrow all the empires of the world, beginning with ourselves, as we develop the character of Christ.
                    http://thechristmasconspiracy.com/

                    America Needs
                    YOU
                    to Become

                    An Extraordinary American
                    An Extraordinary Christian
                    An Extraordinary Human Being

                    Unfortunately, as it stands right now, you are

                    A pathetic American
                    A Christian-in-name-only who makes Jesus puke
                    A waste of awesome human potential

                    You’re insulted.
                    You’re insulted because
                    you’re a victim of educational malpractice
                    In just 60 seconds, you’ll agree with those insulting claims.
                    You’ll say, “I never thought of it that way. I see what you mean.”

                    Then you’ll begin your transformation into

                    An Extraordinary American
                    An Extraordinary Christian
                    An Extraordinary Human Being

                    What makes you think you’re even an ordinary American? What makes you think you qualify as an American at all?

                    You’re not a REAL American

                    Surely an American believes in the Declaration of Independence. That document says we have a duty (not just a right) to abolish any government that becomes a tyranny.

                    In Boston, they tossed the tea into the Harbor. The tax was three pence per pound. You pay TEN TIMES more in taxes on every gallon of gas.

                    The total tax burden in the colonies — the tea tax, the Stamp Act; all taxes combined — was 1% or 2%. Maybe 3% in Virginia. You pay 10 or 20 times more in taxes today, depending on your tax bracket.

                    The British government, taking 2% of Americans’ income, would never have dreamed of using that money to remove the Ten Commandments from public places, especially schools, or to fund abortions. Our tyranny today does that and more.

                    Real Americans risked “our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor” to fight a tyranny 1/20th as bad as ours. What have you risked?

                    Consider this quiz:

                    You’re a teacher. You teach in a government-run school. Your paycheck comes from the government. But you find yourself in a strange nation. You’re not allowed to teach your students that the Declaration of Independence is really true. What country could you be in?

                    China
                    North Korea
                    Iran
                    The United States of America
                    all of the above

                    “d” is not incorrect. “e” is the correct answer. It is illegal to teach children in “public” schools that the Declaration of Independence is really true.

                    Students can be taught that a bunch of dead white guys in 1776 used to believe that it was true, but you can’t teach that the Declaration of Independence really is true, in every nation, regardless of what anyone thinks about it.
                    http://libertyundergod.com/

            • Ahh democracy. Through democracy there are no targets that are off limits. They elected that government and thus they are responsible. Then americans get their panties tied in a knot when foreigners come to the same conclusion about them. What? They are being held responsible for the things the government did without their consent and without even telling them?

            • eric, just doing a little belated reading. Of a sudden it slaps me with a wet towel, hits me between the eyes, etc. etc…….clover is a computer. It’s not a really sophisticated program since it has repeating code for code phrases and sentences. What it reads it turns around on it’s head, hence the severe amounts of non-sequitors. Even starting almost every sentence and every first sentence in response to any statement from you by saying “eric”(insert some totally idiotic non-sequitor here) first. The clincher is it will sometime do this exact same thing to other regular posters who mention clover. It is a learning program to the extent it will sometime take shortcuts in referring to someone’s persona here as other regular posters have begun or have referred to that person, such as acronyms or something similar for people’s identities.

              I’ve wondered many times clover posts lead back to an IP address that bounces around. My guess is it was written by a woman, a woman much smarter than her “clover” program.

              • Dear 8sm,

                That’s hilarious, and has a venerable precedent.

                Alan Turing, the “father of modern computing” wrote about this long ago.

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

                The Turing test is a test of a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behavior equivalent to, or indistinguishable from, that of a human. In the original illustrative example, a human judge engages in natural language conversations with a human and a machine designed to generate performance indistinguishable from that of a human being. All participants are separated from one another. If the judge cannot reliably tell the machine from the human, the machine is said to have passed the test. The test does not check the ability to give the correct answer to questions; it checks how closely the answer resembles typical human answers. The conversation is limited to a text-only channel such as a computer keyboard and screen so that the result is not dependent on the machine’s ability to render words into audio.[2]

          • IOh, Clover, I am OVER-JOYED when I hear about any violent criminal getting snuffed! -More so when that criminal is one who is a mercenary for the state.

            Don’t forget the one in FL. too! It’s nice to hear some good news for a change.

            Funny, how YOU justify these pigs killing other violent criminals, like themselves; and even the perfectly innocent- and yet you don’t see the glaring contradiction of that as being the true mental illness that it is, because you are so lacking logic, and have such blind love for the state and it’s violent servants.

            Then again, if you had the logic to realize the absurdity of the things you say, you’d be embarrassed to post them for all to see.

            • Dear MM,

              No matter how “decent” the murdered cops might be in other respects, the bottom line is that they are leg breakers for the crime family with a flag called “The Government.”

              This crime family demands obedience and extorts money from peace-loving individuals who merely wish to be left alone to live their lives and deal with other human beings on a voluntary basis.

              They do the dirty work for this crime family when they kidnap you and cage you for not making your protection money payments.

              That means they are NOT good people.

              Should anyone mourn their deaths?

              • Exactly, Bevin! They are no better than a Mafia hit-man. I’m sure Clover wouldn’t mourn the death of a Mafia hit-man [Then again, ya never know, with that loon!] but he’d mourn the loss of the state’s hit-men, because he thinks that being authorized by the state somehow legitimizes the crimes that these pigs commit every working day of their lives.

                I rejoice whenever I hear of mercenary getting some payback.

                In fact, I PRAY that the violence and injustices of such men are returned 10-fold upon their own heads and houses and children.

                Saw those prayers answered very interestingly, locally, years ago, when the two sons of a local pot-bellied enforcer of injustice died in separate car accidents at separate locations within 20 minutes of each other!

                • I’m posting this while tired, so this may not be as coherent as it should be, but I’m having a hard time reconciling this whole issue of celebrating the dead dying (even if they are violent criminals, doubly so if they are unaware that they are such) with Christian ethics.

                  Do you think its doable?

                  • Hi David,

                    I’m reluctant as hell to grant the state (that is, other people) life and death authority over anything.

                    That said, if the best we can hope to realize is minarchism (which would be a damn sight better than what we’re stuck with) my solution to the problem of the egregiously violent (murderers, rapists, child abusers) is either permanent incarceration or (if practicable) banishment – both of them premised on the concept that while the first crimes could not have been avoided, further such can be. I could never grok this idea of giving murderers, rapists and so on “second chances” … at more innocent victims’ expense.

                    Some things, you can’t ever make amends for.

                    And, of course, the victims have every natural right to take care of business themselves – and ought not to have to sweat being punished for it.

              • Well as the man in this vid says, America was founded on bootlicking.
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pJuedzzLXE
                Totally hilarious, well worth watching.
                – – –

                Larken’s optimistic thought: This was the topic of my “daily rant” today, but I thought I’d mention it here too, in case you folks might be somewhat lacking in encouraging sentiments about now.

                Everyone who advocates “government” gives noble motives as his justification for the state. Members of the political “left,” “right,” and everything in between, say they want “government” to protect and help decent people, and to stop the bad guys.

                Those who argue in favor of a ruling class by saying “but who will feed the poor?” or “who will keep the bad people in check?” are showing a misunderstanding of reality, but are also showing a desire to achieve a world of peace and harmony.

                The bad news is that statists are horrendously misguided in expecting “government” to achieve that. And yes, the myth of “authority” hijacks their good intentions and turns them into fuel for violence and divisiveness. HOWEVER, the good news is that their ultimate goal is to have truth and justice prevail.

                Why is this important? Because it means that in the vast majority of people, the problem is a misunderstanding, rather than malice. All that needs to happen is for the superstition of “authority” to be removed from their minds, so that their GOODNESS and VIRTUE can be freed from that lie, and then we can watch humanity finally become what it should be.

                Jay David Adkisson, attorney and stockbroker. Makes the case for dismissing Larken Rose and Josie the Outlaw:

                Josie is a fair sight easier on the eyes than Larken but this is just his old garbage wrapped up in a far prettier package. Perhaps I’m being unfair to Mr. smells nothing like a Rose, he no longer seems to be asking for money to teach his failed tax avoidance strategies, he does seem to have rebranded himself.

                There is something of a confluence between some aspects of the Occupy movement and some of the more disaffected members of the Libertarian party, people who’ve tried nothing and are fresh out of ideas.

                “Free Staters” like Ian Freeman have flirted with the Mark Stevens’ of the world and while he seems skeptical of some aspects of “sovereignty” some of the core fallacies remain accepted and unquestioned.

                If you’ve arrived at a point where you passionately believe that as long as you don’t injure someone it’s a violation of your rights to enforce things like speed ordinances and you have no real appreciation of history, then it’s easy to draw a false moral equivalence between traffic cops and the Gestapo.

                In short, there is sorta a hipster doofus wing of the sovereign movement and Larken Rose is plugging into them using a cute mouthpiece to help pass the hat.

                I’m fascinated by how sov’runs keep repackaging the same old debunked doctrines every few years as something new. This is, as you say, the same old garbage – but perhaps for the first time the sov’runs have managed to market it in an attractive way.

                Its not just Josie’s looks, its how she delivers the propaganda and the setting she does it in. Gone are the days of doing this stuff with “don’t tread on me” flags in the background, guns hanging on the walls, with insane guys in military style clothing.

                I think we are seeing the birth of a new self-proclaimed guru. Sov’run gurus always seem to find loads of idiot Americans who will pay them for their worthless recycled ideas, and they will attract even more now because Josie doesn’t look like a freak show.

                The propaganda here is appealing to both the lunatic left and right, which is why things like the “Message to the Police” video are so insane. It actually compares police doing something like arresting someone when they don’t directly “harm someone” to Nazis.

                It also tells them that if they refuse to go along with the “You can’t arrest me as long as I say I’m doing no harm” libertarian line that they might later be killed for their actions. I hope law enforcement takes this sort of insanity very seriously.

                Josie appears to be just another in the long progression of anti-(something) dilletantes. For a spokesperson for the underdog, her designer clothing creates an exceptional disconnect.

                Also, Mommy or Daddy or someone has come up with the money to do some fairly professional location shots, editing, and production.

                She talked the talk, but as soon as the weather starts to get chilly, she’ll be back at home. Taxes are the price we pay for a free society and to cover the responsibilities of the evaders.

                Nothing like telling people that they are the intellectual elite, who think and perceive clearly, unlike the willingly bamboozled masses of “sheep”, to get them to buy your snake oil uncritically.

                This is the central tent pole of any conspiracy theory. A dark pernicious truth hidden by shadowy malefactors who in fact are everywhere and the only hope the blind, mindless masses have to escape the eternal trap is to find the enlightened few and subscribe to their newsletter?

                The psychological dynamics of the Josie sales pitch are sound. Start with a foregone conclusion and walk it back to a few pet unwarranted assumptions.

                We all want justice and liberty and we all know governments lie. Skepticism is a healthy metal habit but if you cut it with enough anxiety and some pharmaceutical grade hopelessness then it’s easy to erase rational distinctions between governance and tyranny.

                Are our collective interests better served by continuing to pay taxes but demanding a greater level of accountability from our elected leaders or by blowing the whole system up and becoming super cool tax free anarchist radicals?

                After some calm reflection most people decide on option A but Larken is angling for donations from some of the option B people. Same as it ever was.

                And “good people” usually are armed. Jesus, Gandhi, Buddha, Martin Luther King Jr., Abraham Lincoln, JFK, and RFK, they were all packing. Just like all “good people” should be.

                Because the Outlaw Josie Wails.
                Because the sovereign movement is a Magnum Farce.
                Because when you know the Truth, you can go into court without fear, secure in the knowledge that the judge is just an empty chair.

                Barkin’ Larken is basically at heart a conman, and is too lazy and inept at to make a living. I’m sure he must have some good qualities, although we know singing, accounting, and tax law aren’t among them.

                He doesn’t seem to do well at gurudom though, as even at the height of his stupidity, he seemed to have a very poor and apathetic following, so I’m kind of at a loss as to where he should apply himself,

                I think we can bypass actual work altogether since he seems to have no inclination there either, so I’m not sure what else is left.

        • When you say “that which is not a violation of God’s Laws” which ones do you mean? I assume you’re going with the NAP?

          As for the rest, I agree with you but you didn’t answer my question. My question was “what do you recommend that I do about it?”

          For what its worth, when I heard about some pastors in Lousiana following government instructions to preach from Romans 13 that they should comply with martial law. I asked my pastor what he would do if he was told to do that. He said he wouldn’t comply. He doesn’t agree with me on all the political issues, but he said he wouldn’t do that.

          But, he also doesn’t recognize all cops as criminals. I do realize it, but I’m still not really sure what to do with that practically.

          • Hi David,

            There are people who are consciously, deliberately evil – that is, they actually enjoy inflicting pain. And there are people who are at the core of their being decent people, trying to do the right thing – but who’ve been misled or tricked into doing the bidding of evil men.

            I’ll illustrate the point using two real-life historical archetypes whose stories I am familiar with: Herman Goring – and Adolf Galland. The former was head of the German Luftwaffe during WWII; the latter one of the Luftwaffe’s greatest pilots.

            Goring was a sadist; he enjoyed making people he regarded as enemies (and not just them) suffer for the sake of making them suffer. He was indifferent to the harm he caused; an absolute narcissist without conscience or compunction. The apotheosis of cynical realpolitik. He willingly – consciously – served an evil man and an evil regime.

            Galland, on the other hand, was an exemplar of the romantic/heroic personality who will sacrifice for a cause he believes to be noble (i.e., “the fatherland”). This man, based on everything I’ve read, was chivalrous in combat, did not delight in destruction and “meant well” – as he saw it.

            Many cops probably fall into this category.

            The question facing us is – how to reach them?

            No doubt, there are also sadists among them. They are beyond reaching.

            But I’d like to think some are salvageable. Indeed, they had better be. Else we face an even more daunting nightmare than we anticipate.

            • Dear Eric,

              Good comment. Measured and thoughtful.

              Let’s hope that Oathkeepers types actually walk the walk during the moment of truth.

              It is going to be awfully easy for what are essentially legbreakers for the PTB to fall back on “I’m sorry. There was nothing I could do. I was given a direct order.”

              Even the best of them might “cop out.” After all, statistically speaking, what percentage of them are going to have the uncompromising integrity of a Frank Serpico?

              Our best bet is for the scales to perceptibly tip in our direction, the way they did in Warsaw Pact nations during the final days of the Soviet Union. The LEOs saw the writing on the wall and defected en masse.

              What would a large-scale gun confiscation look like?
              http://www.policestateusa.com/2014/large-scale-gun-confiscation/

              Excerpt:

              In 2005, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the city of New Orleans became a veritable disaster area and was rife with violence and vandalism. The government’s solution was to launch a wholesale gun confiscation effort in the city — door-to-door.

              Cops and National Guard units went door-to-door — with their own guns drawn — to steal the means of protection from innocent homeowners and shopkeepers. More than 1,000 firearms were seized, and untold numbers of people, houses, and vehicles were aggressively searched in the process. Residents who had already suffered the hardships of the hurricane were left battered, violated, and defenseless by the government.

              • Bevin – we can hope, but I fear even most ‘Oathkeepers’ are law and order statists at heart, honestly believing that they are enforcing the laws for our good. Some might draw the line at disarmament or ‘encampment’ of the public, but how many?

                • So true, PtheB! It’s often the ones who think that they are “doing it for our good” who are the most dangerous. And given that any large organization is easily controlled/subverted, I’d say that nothing good can come from any organized movement- no matter how well-intentioned it may have been when started. (And I don’t know about Oaf-keepers 😀 specifically, but generally, when you research the backgrounds/writings/beliefs/goals of men who start/run most philanthropic orgs, you find a lot of nasty things…..)

            • Oh, I’m all for avoiding/ignoring the sociopaths. They are obviously evil. Its the ones who think they are doing a good thing that are trickier.

            • I think the good guys win, in the long run. But it will be a very long run.

              The fact that every cop out there knows his salary is paid with the proceeds of legalized mugging; and every cop is willing to pull-over speeders and take even more of their money, by force; every cop goes right along with random dui stops, no-knock raids against non-violent “criminals,” asset-forfeiture, militarization of their jobs, etc. The fact that they have morphed, over the years from being peace-officers to what the are today; all of this tells me that they’ll continue to “evolve” until, when the full-on police state is declared, they’ll naturally go along with it; following orders and all that.

              Ditto for our men overseas killing people who have harmed no American nor his property. People like being part of ‘the elite’ and enough clovers get a vicarious thrill from our cops and our military’s actions that I don’t know that there will ever be a mass-movement supporting the NAP.

              Frankly, as a believer, I think it will take the second coming to fix things.

              • I agree completely, Scottsco. (What is it about this site? I’ve never seen so many intelligent; well-informed; thinking and moral people in one place before!)

                What you say is spot-on. The love of violence/oppression/militarization; and the justifying of all atrocities by being a part of the group, is something that has been practiced universally and incessantly down through human history from time immemorial- from when men first started organizing cities with the establishment of the first Babylon- through all the ancient city-states and empires, down to Hitler’s Germany and most of the nations on the earth presently. People never seem to have enough of it; never learn from it; never care enough.

                The only way these abominations seem to end, is when their own dysfunction; decadence and corruption becomes so great that they can no longer function and sustain themselves; or when they become so odious to a competing and stronger power, that they are smashed.

                In any case, they are just replaced by another group, who proceed to do the very same things- and the pattern just repeats itself over and over again- and it seems to get worse with every successive incarnation. I too believe that only God can stop it.

                We can be embassaries and evangelists who promote and live by the principles of the Kingdom which we belong to- but it is not until our King comes, that there will be any true changing of regimes.

            • eric, you make Goering seem evil when the truth was, he was a talentless, out of work politician, ladder climber, dick sucker, brown noser or what ever else you want to add. Society reeks with them constantly. All you need is little minded, or high minded people to get greedy and gain some legitimacy if not creating the hype themselves to gain any legitimacy they can. And they’re off, leader steer with the entire herd behind. It’s so much easier than try to entangle in and be continually crossing through them that the herd always goes right where some lead steer takes them.

              Maybe you could provide us with a synopsis of world politics for the last 1000 years. Not entirely serious but it’s a thought…for some day. It would be a great book I have no doubt. Know you’d do a great job and something very readable.

          • David, No- by God’s laws, I was not referring to the NAP. The NAP is fine….. something that Christians and non-Christians can agree on, to make for a free society, as God intended for humans-at-large; and to restrain the evils of men who would do evil by amassing power and authority by forming man-made institutions of coercion known as governments…

            But we as Christians are held to a higher standard. Here is an example, as pertains to the subject of cops and Christians:

            While God frowns upon drunkenness- He nowhere decreed a human-inflicted punishment for it. So if a cop breaks into someone’s home; uses violence; kidnaps an inhabitant; etc. because that inhabitant choser to use an intoxicant which is not approved by the state- that cop is a robber; an assaulter; a kidnapper; etc. Not only has he violated the NAP; but he has also violated the laws of God against robbery; kidnapping; assault; etc. He has committed crimes (and kidnapping is a capitol offense in God’s sight) and should be punished/executed/make restitution. He has wrought injustice, by committing crimes against someone who was not worthy of punishment in God’s sight.

            Or: How about a cop who must enforce a judgement on someone or arrest them for discriminating against a queer; when in God’s sight, the queer is the crtiminal? So again, we have a so-called “Christian” not only violating the NAP; but directly violating the law of God.

            As for advice on what you should do? Again, what would you do if the pastor let a practicing prostitute; homo; adulterer; or bank robber be a part of the church?

            Sounds like such a pastor is not capable of edifying the body, because he is need of edification himself. Also sounds like his preaching must be very weak, because when someone’s preaching is Biblical, sinners will not just sit there and listen. They get convicted, and either leave, or turn from their misdeeds.

            In fact, I’ll bet if that preacher started preaching hard-hitting truth, like: Not sparing the rod; or not obeying the gov’t when the gov’t’s decree is in opposition to God’s word; or if he condemned faggotry; etc. I’d bet that cop would one day be a witness against him, or even arrest him.

            Cops violate the NAP AND God’s law. They lose in the sight of men and God…..they’re pretty much as reprobate as one can be. If a Christian pastor can’t see such a blaring blatant contradiction….that is sad. I’d venture to say that such a preacher holds the state as his master, before God- because he is in essence overlooking the crimes committed daily by the cop, because he believes that the authority of the state gives him an exemption to commit those crimes- much like the Cat-holic priests gave exemptions to Inquisitors and other criminals who purchased dispensations.

            • @Moleman- The problem right now is twofold:

              1. In Scripture we’re commanded not to forsake the gathering of the brethren. Thus, we are commnaded to attend church.

              2. There are so few of us that actually “get” this. Its not just the vast majority of pastors, its the vast majority of people in the pews as well.

              I feel the same way you do about this mostly, except for the fact that I have seen pastors who have double standards on this point that are otherwise solid preachers. So I know from personal experience that that’s possible.

              But.. it seems impractical to actually do that much about it at the moment.

              Just a question: Do you believe that it is (currently) OK for cops to enforce OT laws that are in violation of the NAP? Why or why not?

              Also, do you currently attend church? Have you actually found one that agrees with you on this stuff?

              • Hi, David,

                (Trying to keep this short, as I’m in a bit of hurry- please don’t interpret it as me being curt)

                1: Yes, we are commanded not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together with THE BRETHREN. Is someone who is working for Satan’s kingdom/serving the system of this world, your “brother”? No! Jesus said “He who doeth the will of My Father is my brother…”.

                2: You keep talking about people “getting it”. It doesn’t matter if they “get it” or not. A cannibal in Burma may not get it, so is he therefore your brother or pastor?

                If someone has the Holy Spirit, they will “get it”.

                3: No, -while as a citizen of God’s Kingdom, I live by God’s laws, I do not think it O-K for a cop to enforce those laws which violate the NAP, because God has not given them that authority (nor anyone else) that authority at this present time (And even in ancient Israel, those laws were only enforced over God’s covenant people; and by priests and other congregants- Although the day is coming when those laws will be enforced by God on the whole world)

                4: While I have heard of churches which will not knowingly fellowship with cops/military types [Although I doubt they’d ever have opportunity to have to enforce such, as their preaching is of sufficient quality to burn the consciences of such men so that they would not sit through 5 minutes of a sermon…. ] I do not know of any organized group in which the Spirit is alive and active- although there are scattered individuals who comprise the real Church- and if we’re lucky enough to live nerar such an one, we would definitely want to fellowship with them.

                But these “things” that pass for churches today are a joke; and unbiblical. I mean, the Biblical Church was a participatory experience for ALL- as we all have our various gifts of the Spirit. Today’s “churches”, are essentially places where you go to be a member of an audience, as one guy speaks; and where you socialize with others in a trivial manner for a few minutes- and your only participation may be in setting up chairs; or mowing the grass; or providing some entertainment.

                And more likely than not, when it comers right down to it, the “pastor”, instead of admonishing you to obey God’s laws, will instead preach AGAINST them (well, usually they pick and choose. ) and in many cases, when it comes right down to it, the guy won’t even believe in the deity of Christ; or maybe that He even walked this earth!)

                I’ll tell you, I made a good start when I started reading the Bible, and searching out the truth and obeying it- but for a while, I did think like you- I tried to find “the Church”. I briefly affiliated myself with the Worldwide Church Of God (in the 80’s)….what a dead-end that was! Then for a time in the 90’s, I fellowshipped with some people (we met in our homes) from the Church Of God The Eternal- and you know what? For the few years I spent doing that, I STAGNATED! In fact, my one-on-one relationship with God, through His Word deteriorated. I wasted several years. As soon as I quit messing with “churches” of men, and got back to having the one-on-one with God, without all the extraneous trappings of men getting in the way, I went right back to growing in grace and knowledge; and to being fervent, instead of luke-warm. Had I still been messing with those churches, I’d be spiritually dead by now- as has indeed happened to virtually all the people I knew in those churches.

                I would never presume to tell you what to do- but I would admonish you, that when it comes to Christian fellowship, only fellowship with those who are truly like-minded (“Can two walk together unless they agree?”)- If those with whom you fellowship “don’t get it”, then it is not fellowship. evangelize them if you can- but don’t kid yourself that it is somehow fellowship, because it isn’t. You’re not getting spiritual meat when you’re listening to some guy who doesn’t even “get it” himself- better to spend that time fellowshipping with God through His word…and if you come across any like-minded others, so be it.

                I really think that there is a Divine reason that we all have direct access to God’s word today- because true believers and true pastors are truly few and far between; yet we can have real fellowship with God; a direct one-on-one relationship, through His word, and therefore need not be deceived by men, “nor need that any man should teach us”. Personally, I want to take full advantage of such a great opportunity, and not dilute it by trying to “force” circumstances which do not truly exist.

                (Did you like my “short” response? 😀 )

                • Here’s my problem, Moleman.

                  The non-aggression principle isn’t the gospel.

                  The doctrine that its immoral to be a police officer isn’t the gospel.

                  Heck, the doctrine that its immoral to MURDER isn’t the gospel.

                  All of these things are important, yes. And, I’ve gone through a lot of personal pain and frustration trying to convince people of those things, especially considering I am not the most humble person and can be a cocky jerk (note: “don’t be a cocky jerk” isn’t the gospel either, and thank God for his grace. I’d be damned to otherwise.)

                  The gospel is justification by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone. The gospel is the message of what Jesus Christ did for sinners to save them from their sin.

                  Now, for the non-believers who are listening in, I apologize for the fact that this post has gotten theological and looks like proselytizing. I am not trying to do that. Not on Eric’s property. I’m only pointing this out because its important to the conversation Moleman and I are having.

                  If someone truly believes the gospel, they are saved. If someone is not saved, that means they don’t truly believe the gospel.

                  A lot of people have never considered the idea that police are violent. A lot of people (and I know this is incredibly arrogant) are not as smart as we are, do not understand the philosophical principles we are talking about here. Does that automatically mean they aren’t saved? When you preach the gospel to someone, do you add “oh, and you also have to acknowledge that the non-aggression principle is true and that X, Y, and Z follow from that?” I don’t.

                  The Biblical means of excommunicating someone from fellowship (which is to declare, we are not confident that they believe the gospel and are saved based on unrepentant sin in their life), after one-on-one confrontation and then bringing one or two brothers with you, is to have the entire (local) church confront them. With bank robbers or prostitutes or active homosexuals or private murderers this is incredibly easy, it is well established that these activities are immoral.

                  With government criminals like soldiers and police, the issue is more difficult to handle because the church is not holding people accountable for these sins, but is instead accepting of and even promoting those sins. Its hard to see through the facade, doubly so if you sincerely believe “there would be chaos” or “we’d lose our freedom” without police and soldiers.

                  Don’t misunderstand, I’m not trying to trivialize the importance of this issue at all. But I don’t think we can dogmatically say that all of these people and the ones who support them are defintively not saved.

                  I will continue to expose the truth of what these professions really entail. I will never participate in any of them. I will never encourage anyone to participate in them. I will continue to try to convince people of the evil of these professions. But until the evil of these professions actually becomes generally accepted in the churches, there’s not necessarily that much more to do about it. I think to morally justify separating myself entirely I would have to be convinced that the church itself was not only wrong, but filled solely with lost people, and that’s not something I’ve convinced of yet.

                  For what its worth, regarding the other questions you asked, my father uses the ESV, not the NIV. He believes in the deity of Christ.

                  Something I’ve noticed, and this of course varies by the person. Arminians usually strike me as far more statist than Reformed/Calvinist Christians do. Dispensationalists also tend to be very statist, particularly with regards to foreign policy, because Israel. Because Reformed theology is more counter-cultural anyway (its not exactly culturally popular to hold that God predestines our actions and that he sovereignly chooses who he’s going to save and so forth) I think that generally leads to more sincere a Christianity and less of one that’s just cultural. That doesn’t lead to perfectly consistent ancaps overnight, but in my experience most Reformed people are at least understanding of what I think and why I think it (or at the least they are sympathetic to minarchism) whereas Arminians tend to be more the flag-waving, support the GOP type. That isn’t always true, but its a trend I’ve noticed.

                  • David, in order to qualify for that grace by faith (to be absolved of one’s sins) we must STOP practicing those sins- i.e. repentance- “Let him who stole, steal no more”- et al.

                    If you had a Mafia guy in the congregation who was murdering people; or shaking-down businesses for protection money; or stealing…..would you consider him your Christian brother and fellowship with him; and be a part of a congregation that would allow him to remain in the church?

                    How is a cop any different?

                    He’s only different to those who think that the state’s laws trump God’s laws, and therefore grant him immunity to commit those crimes.

                    Like I’ve said, it’s ultimately all about who our ultimate authority is and whom we truly serve/is our master.

                    They dealt with this in the NT- what did John The Baptist say to the soldiers who came to his baptism? “Do violence to no man”- They either stop committing their crimes/breaking God’s laws; or they remain of the world. Can’t have it both ways.

                    • @MM- Its a valid point, MM, and that’s the point I struggle with. What’s the difference? Its purely social. What would I do in a society that didn’t consider mafia members thieves because their crimes were socially accepted or some such? The viewpoint of “if the government does it its not theft” is so common and people fall back on the “the Bible doesn’t specifically say those laws are wrong.” Implication is totally lost on them (I’m not wording this as well as I’d like, as its late, but you know the type of people I’m rambling about.)

                      Its really pervasive and I don’t know how to deal with it. I don’t think “all non-libertarians are unsaved” is the way to do it though.

          • I’m glad you mentioned Romans 13. I don’t believe it means what the statoloters say it means. The ‘governing authorities,’ as I see it, are the governing authorities of the church, to which church members are expected to pay heed.
            And don’t forget Matthew 28:18, where the risen Lord says “ALL authority is given to Me.” Any government, civil, church or otherwise, that does not acknowledge that it has no authority of its own, only delegated authority, is illegitimate and need not be heeded, except for convenience or safety. (The sake of peace, as Shaul says.)

            • Check the writings of Chuck Baldwin for more on this. Like Gary North, I do not agree with him completely, but I have learned from him.

            • Right on, PtheB, re: Romans 13 !!!!

              Considering that Romans was written when either Nero, or one of the other depraved evil Roman emperors were in power, Paul could not possibly be referring to civil pagan government when he said that powers which be were ordained of God to punish evil- because just like in our very day, the powers of the civil state more often rewarded evil and punished the good- just as they killed most of the Apostles.

              And what’s more, the perverted new bible “translations”, like the filthy NIV, actually take it upon themselves to make Romans 13 say that we should “obey the policeman”…LOL- [What can one expect from a “bible” that was produced by a board which included a dyke and a queer among it’s members?!]

              (((Hey, David, does your “don’t get it” pastor use the NIV? if so, Google “Virginia Mollenkott” to see why he doesn’t get it, and what you’re being fed….)))) [She’s the liberal apostate godless dyke who helped translate the NIV]

              • I don’t use the NIV.

                NIV Text for Romans 13:

                Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.

                6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

                ESV Text for Romans 13:

                Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.

                No direct mention of “the policeman” in either text. I’ve seen direct mentions of “the policeman” in paraphrases. I once actually saw someone use one of the paraphrases to defend the idea that Paul the Apostle was a “statist scumbag.” I thought that if he wasn’t an idiot he would have at least used a real translation. Blech.

                Romans 13 is a hard text to deal with. Having a bunch of people having Romans 13 shoved down their throats without knowing much about the rest of the Bible will really get them brainwashed into being statists. Which is a big part of the reason I don’t think many people “get it”… they want to apply the Bible to everything but the one passage they remember is this one, because its the one everyone talks about and its the only one they assume applies to government.

                A true Christian can be misled, to a point. Where that point is would be more what’s tricky for me than whether there is such a point.

        • Out of all the conversations I have had in which statists have tried to drill some type of moral difference between cops and more “commonly accepted as sinful” sinners like prostitutes, homosexuals and so forth, the only one I can accept as reasonable is this:

          There are Bible passages that SPECIFICALLY address certain sins such as homosexuality and prostitution. No wiggle room.

          On the other hand, it takes a little bit of logical application and thinking through the fact that government actually is coercion and that moral principles apply across the board and so forth. There is no Bible passage that says “its wrong to be a cop.” That’s something we deduce based on multiple scriptural propositions that logically fit together to lead to the conclusion that being a cop is wrong.

          For instance, with homosexuality its like this:

          1. The Bible is always true (this one, while understandably disputed by non-Christians, isn’t up for debate in a Christian context.)

          2. The Bible says homosexuality is always wrong.

          3. It is always true that homosexuality is wrong.

          While, again, I can see why a non-Christian would disagree with this, this is basically one of the simplest theological propositions than this.

          On the other hand, with police the argument is something more like this:

          1. The Bible is always true (given, per above).

          2. The Bible teaches that initiating violence is wrong.

          3. It would be kidnapping for me to lock someone in a cage for a victimless crime. It would be theft for me to take his money because he violated some technical foul I dreamed up on “public property.”

          4. Morality is absolute, there isn’t one set of morals for some people and different sets of morals for others.

          5. The government is made up of people.

          6. The government is bound by the same morals as the rest of us.

          7. The actions described in #3 qualify as violent.

          8. All Police (in reality, not a hypothetical world) engage in the actions described in #3.

          9. Being a police officer requires you to do things that you already agreed are wrong.

          Now, I honestly still think this argument is pretty simple (and I could probably take some steps out, its late at night, give me a break.) But most people seem to have difficulty with this for some reason. And it is at least a little bit more complicated, requiring a bit more logical work, than saying homosexuality is wrong.

          Of course you would expect the Christian statist to deny point #3, but oddly enough, they deny point #7 most of the time to, even though its self-evident fact.

          I’ve been called “prideful” and a “know it all” because I can be “condensing” to people who argue with #7 (“we just have a different opinion than you”).

          I’m not totally sure how to deal with it because its not so much a disagreement on opinions as on facts. It is quite literally

          Me: “The grass is green”

          Statist: “No it isn’t”.

          Me: Yes it is, you’re an idiot because you’re denying the reality right in front of your face. (I’m somewhat more charitable in person than this but this is how I generally feel when I say whatever I really say.)

          Statist: Settle down. I just have a different opinion than you. And the Bible doesn’t directly say that the grass is green and so its not a big deal if we just agree to disagree on this.

          Me: Walks away frustrated. Prays about it, because even though atheists don’t understand this, I do care what God thinks. Continues to think I am right, because I clearly, factually am. Questions why he continues to give a crap. Comes on EPA and decides to complain to someone who is actually intelligent.

          Now, I know some people who will agree with #7 but will reject some other point. Some point that, while we may all agree its correct, can at least logically be consistent. Maybe they argue the Bible doesn’t really teach that morals are equal across the board, and that government has a right to engage in aggression. Or maybe they say the Bible doesn’t necessarily say initiating violence is wrong at all. They certainly question #3, OK, so they’re separating the mechanics of the act from what they perceive as the morals of it. OK, I can deal with that, a difference of opinion. Mind, its harder for other reasons, but at least there’s an agreement on basic facts.

          When there isn’t, its kind of hard to know what to do. It would be like if someone were to argue “well, of course homosexuality is wrong but one man sleeping with another man in a gay marriage doesn’t count as homosexuality.” That’s pretty much how these arguments (not here, IRL) sound to me.

          And I’m pretty much mentally broken at this point. Even as a 19 year old, I am exhausted and I feel done.

          • Hi David,

            I worry about another person’s sexual interests about as much as I worry about their preference for strawberry rather than chocolate ice cream… or Chevy rather than Ford.

            Why does anyone give a shit?

            It baffles me.

            To be clear: I am speaking of consensual activities involving adults. Assuming that – and assuming no one else is being compelled to subsidize it – how can anyone who is an advocate of human liberty raise an objection?

            Mind: I am not suggesting you approve. Merely that you acknowledge it’s not your business (or anyone else’s) and leave others free to do their thing.

            Keep in mind that many people regard certain straight sexual acts as “unnatural” or “perverse” – and regard any sex that is not deliberately procreative in intent as well as possibility to be “sinful.” Ever had a girl give you oral sex? Or give a girl oral sex? Outside of marriage? Or in? Even today, such things are regarded as “sinful”… even within marriage… by some religious folk.

            I find such views odd and sad. But if that’s the way some people want to live their lives, so be it. It’s their right – and I certainly won’t condemn them on account of it. But – and this is critical – they should be willing to extend the same respectful courtesy to the peaceful/mutually agreeable choices made by others.

            I have two (ex) friends who are ex-friends due in part to their constant haranguing (violent and angry) about gays.

            It got tiresome. And, worrisome. People that animated about other people’s private/consensual and harming-no-one-else activities are at minimum a latent threat to liberty as such because they clearly have a problem with some expressions of liberty.

            That is to say: If they’re willing to badger (and worse) gays merely for being gay (this includes gay sex, if it’s entered into by adults who are willing, etc.) then it seems to me they are Clovers-in-the-making. Because there is no reason why their animus toward gays could not shift to other peaceful/no-victim-involved activities.

            They are not principled adherents of the NAP, who respect the liberty of others across the board. They merely align in some ways with the liberty philosophy.

            And that is a dagger aimed at the very heart of the liberty philosophy.

            What was it The Chimp once said?

            You’re either with us – or against us?

            Quite so.

            • Pursuing one’s sexual interests is a peaceful activity, and therefore of no concern to us.

              I used to misguidedly take a position within the existing mindset of statolatry. Given that I was surrounded by worshippers of a violent state, it seemed plausible to “do as the romans do while in rome.” To side with my kindred straights, against the enemy LGBTs. Doing as the romans do never worked, I’m now convinced doing that is the worst thing you can do.

              If you don’t instead fully dis-associate mentally from the state, you’ll find yourself drawn into endless faux wars and constantly taking a fighting stance to defend yourself in the unending wars of all against all.

              The key is to fully reject statolatry. To refuse to worship the state, or even the smallest aspect of it, because it is imposed upon you by a violent ruling class.

              Statolatry refers to worshiping the state as the source of goodness to which all else should be subordinated. In statolatry, instead of having a separation of church and state, the state replaces the church and becomes its own religion.
              There is no going back, the state we labor under simply must be delegitimized, I would argue.

              In “Omnipotent Government”, Ludwig von Mises explained, “A new type of superstition has got hold of people’s minds, the worship of the state. People demand the exercise of the methods of coercion and compulsion, of violence and threat. Woe to anybody who does not bend his knee to the fashionable idols!”

              Classical liberalism had formerly been the antithesis of statolatry, because it celebrated the values of individual liberty, such as free speech and free trade.
              http://fff.org/explore-freedom/article/state-heretics-state-infidels/

              American libertarianism is closely related to classical liberalism, but is not identical to it.

              Libertarianism Defined: by FFF, 2012

              Libertarianism is a political philosophy that holds that a person should be free to do whatever he wants in life, as long as his conduct is peaceful. Thus, as long a person doesn’t murder, rape, burglarize, defraud, trespass, steal, or inflict any other act of violence against another person’s life, liberty, or property, libertarians hold that the government should leave him alone.

              In fact, libertarians believe that a primary purpose of government is to prosecute and punish anti-social individuals who initiate force against others.

              What are some policy ramifications of what has become known as the libertarian “non-aggression principle”?

              People should be free to engage in any economic enterprise without permission or interference from the state. Thus libertarians oppose all occupational licensure laws and all economic regulations of business activity.

              Libertarians also believe that people have the right to keep whatever they earn and decide for themselves what to do with their own money–spend it, invest it, save it, hoard it, or donate it.

              This then means, necessarily, that libertarians are ardent advocates of the free market, which is simply a process by which people are interacting peacefully with each other for mutual gain.

              What are some specific applications of libertarian principles to real-world problems?

              Education: libertarians call for the complete separation of school and state, which means the repeal of school compulsory-attendance laws and school taxes–that is, the complete end of all governmental involvement in education. This would mean a completely free market in education, in which consumers decide the best educational vehicles for their children and entrepreneurs (both for-profit and charitable) are meeting the demands of the consumers.

              Social Security: an immediate repeal of Social Security, which is simply a coercive transfer program in which older people are able to steal from young people. Again, people have a right to their own earnings. If a person fails to provide for his retirement, he must rely on the charity and good will of his family, his friends, his church groups, or people in his community. Libertarians believe that it is morally wrong for a person to use the state to take what doesn’t belong to him.

              Welfare: immediate repeal of all welfare primarily on moral grounds but also on the terribly destructive aspects of government welfare programs. People have a right to their own earnings and no one has the right to take someone else’s money against his will. Moreover, no one is made a better person because the state is taking money from one person in order to give it to another person. Finally, government welfare creates a sense of hopeless dependency on the welfare recipient.

              Drug laws: the decades-long war on drugs is immoral and has proven to be highly destructive. People have a right to engage in peaceful, self-destructive behavior as long as their conduct is peaceful. Drug addiction should be treated as a social, medical, psychological problem, not a criminal one. Legalizing drugs would immediately put an end to drug lords and drug gangs and the violence associated with the drug war–that is, the burglaries, robberies, thefts, etc. associated with the exorbitant black-market prices that drug users must pay to finance their habits.

              The IRS and income tax: repeal them and leave people free to keep the fruits of their earnings and decide for themselves how to dispose of their wealth.

              Gun Control: People have a right to resist the tyranny of their own government and to protect themselves from the violent acts of private criminals.

              Environment: Governments are the great destroyers of the environment. In fact, most environmental problems can be traced to public, not private, ownership of resources. The solution is to privatize public property to the maximum extent possible.

              Health Care: the crisis in health care, especially with respect to ever-rising prices, is due to heavy government involvement in health care–Medicare, Medicaid, and licensure laws. These laws and programs should be repealed in favor of a totally free market in health care.

              Immigration: Libertarians oppose any controls on the free movements of goods and people, both domestically and internationally. People have the right to move and to improve their lives.

              Foreign Policy: Libertarians oppose involvement in foreign wars as well as all foreign aid. The U.S. government should be limited to protecting the nation from invasion but should stay out of the affairs of other nations.

              Civil Liberties: Libertarians are firm advocates of the First Amendment and the procedural aspects of due process of law, such as the rights to be protected from unreasonable searches and seizures, and in criminal cases the right to an attorney, notice and hearing, and trial by jury.

              The philosophy on which the United States was founded was, by and large, founded on libertarianism, especially with the ideas in the Declaration of Independence and the limitation on powers in the Constitution.

              In 1890 America, for example, the following government programs were virtually nonexistent: income taxation, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, economic regulation, occupational licensure, a Federal Reserve System, conscription, immigration controls, and gun control.

              In the 20th century, the American people abandoned libertarianism in favor of the socialistic welfare state and the controlled or regulated society.

              Thus, the intellectual and moral battle for the third century of our nation’s existence is between those who favor liberty — libertarians — versus those who favor state control of peaceful activity — “statists.”

            • While I agree with David that homosexuality is Sin, as long as we are not living in a theocracy, it need not be a crime.
              My main complaint against homos (I refuse to call them gay, a perfectly good word that they have stolen, just like the Progressives stole the word ‘liberal.’) is not with the quiet, mind-their-own-business, types, but with the militant activists who DEMAND that we not only accept them, but grant them special privileges, based on their ‘minority’ status.
              On the one hand, they claim “we can’t help how they feel, we were born this way.” Then they go to a demonstration and chant “10% is not enough! Recruit! Recruit! Recruit!”
              Can’t have it both ways, bucko.

              • I feel the same way, PtheB. While I consider faggotry an evil, I also consider the use of drugs to be immoral; as I abhor prostitution; etc. Yet, like you say, since we do not live in a theocracy/God is currently not ruling this earth, I’m perfectly willing to tolerate evil/acts of immorality which others practice in their own lives, for the sake of maintaining freedom.

                But like you say, THEY don’t believe the same thing. They want their actions to not only be tolerated, but condoned; to the point where those who so much as criticize them/ostracize them/refuse to do business with them, are penalized; and to the point where even CHILDREN must be propagandized to accept them.

                • Hi Mole,

                  With regard to homosexuals – as generally – it is important not to blanket indict. I am in complete agreement with you as regards the proselytizing/pushy ones who insist that others embrace their choices (and provide funds, etc., to support them). But that is one thing. Accepting that people have a right to engage in consensual relationships without being hassled is another.

                  I’m just making the point that (I think) it’s important NAP/liberty advocates hew to their principles, even in cases where another person’s freely made choice is not the choice we’d make. You mentioned “drugs.” This is another case in point. “Immoral” to consume drugs? I dunno. Is it “immoral” to drink a beer with friends? I don’t see how. I am imbibing a drug at this very moment (my morning cup of coffee). Is it immoral?

                  In any event, the relevant point as regards the NAP is that while consuming a drug (or partaking of a given form of sex) may be a vice in some people’s eyes, or according to a religious code, it doesn’t (as I see it) rise to the level of harm caused – which ought to be our Occam’s Razor as far as defining that which is actionably wrong.

                  • Eric,

                    I don’t believe I ever said homosexuality should be a crime. Let me reiterate: What two adults do in their bedroom is none of my business.

                    I wish I could live in a society that, like in the past, generally recognized such behavior as distasteful, particularly for public. When homosexuals try to propagandize children into thinking their behavior is OK, I think that would justify harsh words in response. Use GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS to do it, well… this is why government schools shouldn’t exist.

                    • David, you say: Let me reiterate: What two adults do in their bedroom is none of my business.

                      I hope you’ll allow them to use the kitchen table or the pool table or the lawn too. I realize this is asking a lot but could they have their way in the pickup too? Please? It’s so multi-dimensional with the cab, back seat, “bed”, roof and hood plus the “piece’ de resistance” the tailgate. BTW, I want to address pickup makers of all brands, quit jacking the damned things so far off the ground and you won’t need a ladder……and oral sex won’t be the only tailgate option.

                      Sorry, but I look at ALL the utilitarian features of a vehicle.

                • “But like you say, THEY don’t believe the same thing. They want their actions to not only be tolerated, but condoned; to the point where those who so much as criticize them/ostracize them/refuse to do business with them, are penalized; and to the point where even CHILDREN must be propagandized to accept them.”

                  Sounds an awful lot like organized religion to me.

            • A lot of conservative Christians annoy me when it comes to homosexuality because they emphasize the sinfulness of that behavior above that of other sins. Murder and kidnapping are OT capital crimes (in saying that I am not advocating enforcing all OT laws today) as well, yet many Christians who condemn homosexuality support these sins in the form of military and police.

              What gives there?

              THe main reason I’m using homosexuality is that its something pretty much all Christians (liberals aside) would agree is sinful. I am not trying to convince you that homosexuality is sinful.

              Call me a latent clover if you like, but I think that really cheapens the meaning of the term “clover.” Same with you indirectly referring to Gary North as an “uber clover.” That just cheapens the meaning of the term. It wasn’t meant to refer to the intelligent, as I recall.

                • @MM- This isn’t something I’ve encountered either. The main issues that are up for debate are whether remarriage is allowed in cases of adultery, and whether remarriages are allowed in a case where an unbelieving spouse leaves a believer when they were both believers at the time of the marriage.

            • eric, sexual preferences come under the aegis of mores’ and not morals as far as I”m concerned. It’s not as if some cultures didn’t/don’t accept or embrace homosexuality. For the homo bashers I’d like them to see a film about homosexuality in the animal world. I don’t recall the maker but it was fascinating. Some animals species are 90% homosexual but they reproduce in great numbers.

              Of course, not having religious baggage helps me to see it for what it is, nature, plain and simple.

              Funny how I recall homosexual children while growing up but those who had the religious lobotomy don’t recall knowing any….even though we might have known the same people to a great degree. Throw out a name and they say ‘Well, he never said or did anything homosexual with ME’. No shit, he didn’t want the inevitable beating.

              Or name that girl and somebody would say “I used to go out with her”. Did you have sex? Well……. no. Remember that other girl she used to always be with? Yeah, but that was common. Damn right it was and still is. They may be married but…….

              It’s simply self-defense to not reveal to bigoted people anything that would cause you harm.

              About the time everybody had graduated from college and one guy who was inseparable with 2-3 other guys he grew up with found himself some new friends and went off on his own. His BEST friend said “I never knew G was gay”. Everyone else in the room was trying to muster a polite way of showing him what he was missing. Sometimes I have been known to be brief when it comes to dumbasses so I said ‘M, didn’t you get a hint when he started wearing eye make-up and lipstick?”. Then everybody else started mumbling and sorta giggling. I’d just said it all and that broke the ice and then other people said yes or do you remember?

              He wasn’t THAT much different from everyone else. I always wondered about the guys who didn’t want to hang out with the girls when we partied. Maybe he(G) hung out with some for other reasons. I always gave it a round to get a couple-three or any amount of girls to give up their clothes and have some fun. I wasn’t so stupid as to not know how the wind was blowing when they barely acknowledged me and could only take the leavings although some seemed to like it All, well enough.

              Now and again I almost think I don’t remember having sex when I lie down in the ‘wet spot’. And then I remember…CJ, you sumbitch, quit licking your dick where I sleep.

              • ” homosexuality in the animal world.”

                Shame on you, 8Man! You’re familiar with cows. When you see a bull humping a younger bull or a steer, is it because he’s choosing to have sex with it over the cows in the field; or is it rather that he is NOT engaging in sex, but rather a social act of asserting dominance? (HINT: As someone whose knowledge of cows comes from much personal observation, I’d pick the latter!]

                Same with a dog who humps your leg. Is that dog a “humanosexual”, or just a horny dog who has no hands with which to rub one off when a biotch isn’t around, so he uses what’s ever handy?

                And even if there were truly homosexuality among animals, how would that be relevant to US? Are you advocating that we use the behavior of animals to justify our conduct? If so, then forget the NAP, because we could justify aggression/violence/theft/cannibalism and many other things by merely appealing to the lower species….. If we are expected to be no better than animals, then forget the NAP, ’cause the only laws animals abide by are the law of the jungle and the survival of the fittest.

                • Moleman, don’t you dare bring up livestock. I can’t quit laughing. Bulls and dogs…..the story of my life. I’m speaking of all species of animals. It’s common in every specie to some extent and extremely common in some.

                  I admit I never noticed an overabundance of NAP in the animal world…or the human one either.

            • Eric, I think we all have certain aesthetics and morals about sex.

              For instance: Suppose you knew a guy who had a thing for little girls (or boys- doesn’t matter). Even if he never actually did anything with them- if all he did was talk about how the mental image of a 9 year-old boy or girl turns him on; that he beats-off to thoughts of such; if he gets a stiffy when a school bus goes by….

              You’d probably think that that was pretty creepy; find it repulsive; and not want to associate with such a person, and rightfully so- for the same reasons that we find adultery abhorrent [and like the example above- it’s not just the consent thing. I don’t know about you, but if I knew a guy who was just fine with his wife having consensual sex with other men, I would find that just as abhorrent -in fact, more so.

              While I agree that it is no one’s business what others do in private- and certainly not the state’s business, I would say that when others make publicly known their sexual appetites/deeds, that they then open themselves up to the criticism and possible ostracism of those who find their preferences distasteful/disgusting/immoral- and there is nothing wrong with THAT.

              How ironic that we live in a day when the state has now taken to itself the role of giving people who practice certain sexual mores special rights and privileges and protections; and now discriminates against those who don’t agree with IT’S sexual aesthetics- to the point where it is now a crime in some cases, to merely criticize; oppose; condemn; voice an opinion; or refuse to associate with/do business with those who sexual practices one finds abhorrent.

              And for the record: I find oral sex, even among normals, to be repulsive. Bathroom parts don’t belong in one’s mouth. (Funny thing, I could “discriminate” against heteros for that, but we are not allowed to “discriminate” against fudgerpackers for doing the same. Just shows ya how convoluted and perverted things get when the gov’t gets involved! )

              • @Moleman- I see no Biblical reason why any form of sexual activity WITHIN marriage would be wrong. Are you of the belief that there is something objectively wrong with “oral sex” and so forth, or do you just personally think its “gross” or whatever?

          • Wow! David! I had no idea you were only 19 !! I got into this stuff (The Bible and libertarianism) when I was at a similar age, too- and what a blessing it truly it is, to know these things, and to be able to think and act upon them, BEFORE we have had a chance to screw our lives up by merely going along with the flow of the secular world!!!

            And from what you have said above, it is obvious that you are well-grounded in these truths already!

            Don’t let anyone turn you from them! You obviously know more than your pastor already. Stand for the truth, no matter what! Don’t compromise! We often have to stand alone. Realize that and accept it.

            I’ve seen a LOT of people start out good, but who went off the track because they were looking for approval in groups/with other people. Forget that. Serve God, not men. Do what you know is right- even if you think you’re the only one in the world who is. Any compromise will cause you to fall.

            Stand strong, my friend! You’re in good company.

            This is a joyous occasion for me, to hear of a young man embarking on such a course! I’m 52 now, and let me tell you, it’s been a battle- to keep the secular world at bay, because that world these days has infiltrated every institution of men, including 99.9% of churches; and ther minds of most men.

            Those who will embark upon a truly Biblical walk, are just as unpopular with mainstream (phony) Christians as they are with secularists. One has to just resolve to live by what he knows is right- and not compromise- regardless of the consequences.

            But believe me, if this world should continue long enough, you’ll look back 20 years from now, and realize what a blessed walk it has been- and that seeing and believing the things you do, has truly been more valuable than the riches of the entire world!

            I look at the richest people on earth today, and know that i wouldn’t trade places with any or all of them! I have what they will never have! And if I had my life to live over again, I would do it the exact same way- only more so!

            • MM – I am even older than you, 64 (will you still need me, will you still feed me?), and was nearly your age when I finally came to a minarchist libertarian understanding.
              I grew up as a ‘good conservative.’ Then at some point in my late 20’s-early30’s I decided that a conservative was nothing more than a defender of the status quo – and that that status quo was no longer worth defending. For a while I considered myself a reactionary. But that is just negative, and besides, to what did I want the government to return? The Constitution? While it would be a big improvement over what’s going on now. it’s still not that great. Then in 1983 I discovered Gary North. While I do not agree with him completely, his writings have helped shape my thoughts. I kind of lost track of him for a while after I remarried, then just after Y2K, I rediscovered him, and he led me to Lew Rockwell. Now Lew has led me here. So I am still growing, even at my ‘advanced age.’

              • Part of my ‘awakening’ came as the result of being the victim of a ‘no fault divorce.’ What a crock! If you do not want to be part of a committed, covenant relationship, no one is forcing you. But to allow either party to simply opt out, with no regard for the wishes of the other? Especially when there are children involved? Even simple contracts are subject to enforcement. As some Governor said, “I can more easily divorce my wife of 25 years than terminate the employment of my secretary of 6 months.”

                • Yeah….why is the state even involved in the RELIGIOUS institution of marriage? Just like with guns; first one just “registered” their marriage with the state; then before long, the state dictated the terms of the marriage contract- i.e. who could marry; who and for what reason could divorce; and now, the coup de e puddy-tat, they have come to even define the terms of what constitutes marriage! And, like everything else the state get involved with, they have totally ruined the institution, and gutted it.

                  If I ever married [which, at this point I will not!] it wouild ber by private contract- and without making the state a party to that contract.

                  Even before I had “awakened”, it always bothered me, even as a kid, when you see a marriage being performed on TV, and the guy would say “By the power vested in me BY THE STATE of ___, I pronounce you man and wife”! Where in the world did any state ever acquire such a power?

                  That was just one of those thing I noticed- like having to have “working papers” as a teen, or compulsory pooblik school attendance, which seemed to fly in the face of the “free country” that everyone spoke of.

                  • Dear MM,

                    “… the guy would say “By the power vested in me BY THE STATE of ___, I pronounce you man and wife”! Where in the world did any state ever acquire such a power?”

                    This is the crux of the problem. Nothing else. This is it.

                    The greatest mystery in the world is why people feel morally obligated to obey a gang of strangers, merely because the gang calls itself “The Government.”

                    The Myth of Authority: the myth that people with something called “authority” may enslave people without it.

                    If enough people realize they’ve been conned, the entire institution of “government” will come tumbling down, the way the Warsaw Pact governments came tumbling down after 1989.

                    https://anenemyofthestate.wordpress.com/quotations-from-chairman-zhu/

                    • Hi, Bevin!

                      “The greatest mystery in the world is why people feel morally obligated to obey a gang of strangers, merely because the gang calls itself “The Government.””

                      Haha! I think- as pertains to marriage, anyway- people do it for the tax break. This is really what the “gay marriage” issue is all about. There is nothing stopping homos from marrying each other….it’s just the gov’t-sanctioned marriage they want, so they can get the tax break [Which is insane, since that tax break was meant to be a stimulus to enc ourage procreation…..] and for the benefits that employers and the like would then be rorced to convey upon them.

                      Apparently, they don’t realize the high price they will pay for such a privilege- as they will then be subject to the family courts- and things like alimony and property splitting, as decided by strangers- but then again, I guess they LIKE taking up the wazoo! 😀

                    • Hi Mole,

                      You’re absolutely right. The core problem is the state defining marriage – and issuing “permission” (and privileges).

                      Such things are no business of government, because they are no one else’s business. If two people are of a certain faith, then they have every right to be married within the context of their faith – and outsiders have no right whatsoever to define/alter the “terms and conditions.” It’s a private contract.

                      These can be secular, too – in the legal sense. That is, two people can agree to pool their assets and each thereafter has a valid claim to the joint assets.

                      As always, the problem is the got-damned government!

              • Wow, PtheB! I always enjoy hearing of how others came to be at this point of light and truth to which so many on this site have arrived!

                I like Gary North too- I’ve read some of his books. Like you, I don’t always agree with him on everything- but he’s one of the good guys. I liked his late father-in-law even more- Rousas John Rushdoony.

                The problem I have with both of them, is that they are reconstructionists- and seem to think that WE can affect the Kingdom of God on earth (which is comical, because the world is clearly going in the opposite direction- with even “the Christian church” having largely abandoned the faith)- and they seem to pretty much deny the coming reign of Christ, when He returns- but none-the-less, Rushdooney’s book The Institutes Of Biblical Law is one of my favorites of all time.

                It wasn’t until I got a computer [which was something I never would have gotten on my own, but got one as part of a business endeavor with an acquaintence] that I came to discover North and Rushdoony and Rockwell, et al- before that, I was on my own- always looking to find like-minded people who could validate and reinforce the things I had learned by observation and experience….but always coming up empty when scouring the libraries… [but funny, how there was never any lack of radical, leftist, statist garbage in those libraries!)

                I too used to consider myself a Constitutionalist- until I realized what true libertarianism was about- and I’d still be happy with a Constitutional/minarchist gov’t- even though it would not be as good anarcho-capitalism, it would sure be a breath of fresh air compared to what we presently have; and a lot closer to the ideal- and it would be “do-able”, because it technically “the law of the land”- so the legal basis is already there for the dismantling of the current unconstitutional gov’t; and the re-establishment of the minimal gov’t which the constitution mandates.

                • as far as I understand, Rushdoony, Bahnsen, North, and the other Reconstructionists are partial preterist postmillennialists. Thus, they are more optimistic than most other Christians regarding what can be accomplished in this world, but they nonetheless believe Jesus will physically come back again. Note that the key term here is “partial preterist.” That means they believe most, but not all, Biblical prophecy has already come to pass.

                  That said, there are a few postmillennialists that are also full preterists and thus don’t believe Christ is physically coming back again. I would consider this a heretical viewpoint, much as I like Kevin Craig’s blog (Kevin Craig is a postmillennial ancap who borders on if is not outright full preterist.)

            • Moleman,

              There are some people who are just consistently phony and pseudo. Those aren’t necessarily that hard to deal with. You just write them off as non-Christians in Christian clothing, and you move on.

              Its harder when you have people, and I know some like this, who are rock solid when it comes to faith, are themselves criticized by the pseudo-Christians, but they totally fail on the politics end of things and wind up supporting statism. Most (though not necessarily all) of these people are mostly apolitical and just don’t really understand the issues. What’s annoying is when they think I don’t, when I know full well that I do. This has made me quite arrogant, which I know at some level is a problem.

              For what its worth, my father is my pastor. He is a man of God (and I don’t say that just because he’s a family member, there are numerous members of my family that I am convinced are not saved despite professing Christianity) who has had his morals compromised by conservatism, as most have. But with him, as it usually is with saved people, its somewhat tempered, and there’s some sign of the truth there.

              • ” What’s annoying is when they think I don’t, when I know full well that I do.”

                Hmmm. What does 1 Corinthians 8:2 have to say about this David?

                For bonus points, why do I know this when you clearly didn’t as evidenced by the quote.

        • Public-anus

          During the time of Jesus in first century Israel, there were publicans and tax collectors who could walk up to a man and tax him for what he was carrying, and much more. These tax collectors were hated and despised because they were usually fellow Jews who worked for Rome. There were many taxes needed from the provinces to administrate the Roman Empire.

          The term publican is from the Latin word “publicanus”, and from the Greek word “telones” which mean a tax gatherer.

          The publican is mentioned quite often throughout the life of Christ. Since Israel was under Roman rule, and part of a province of the Roman Empire, customs duties were farmed out to chief tax collectors. These chief tax collector’s what also farm these duties over to the regular tax collectors.

          In the eyes of Rome the provinces were to carry the heavy weight of administering the Empire. Judea was in the province of Syria and every man was to pay 1% of his annual income for income tax. But that was not all, there were also import and export taxes, crop taxes (1/10 of grain crop and 1/5 of wine, fruit, and olive oil), sales tax, property tax, emergency tax, and on and on.

          It was actually a Roman official (censor) who was ultimately responsible to Rome for collecting the revenue of the province, but he sold the rights to extort tax to the highest bidders.

          Most of the time when the Bible mentions a publican, or a tax collector it is referring to a regular tax collector (publicanus) rather than a chief tax collector. The tax collectors were usually Jewish and therefore they were hated by their own people. When they collected their taxes for Rome they would turn over the required amount of money, and whatever they could add on for themselves is what they kept.

          They were known to be extortioners of large sums of money. Because tax collectors were in relationship with Rome, who were Gentiles in the eyes of the Jews, and hated for their domination, they were treated similar to the worst kinds of sinners and prostitutes.

          Jesus showed much kindness to the publicans, and he was even mentioned as having had dinner with them, which in Israel was a sign of fellowship. (Luke 18 and 19). In fact one of his apostles named Matthew (Levi) was a tax collector, and became an author of one of the accounts of the life of Christ known as the book of Matthew.

        • CloverMoleman you are ignorant. Back thousands of years ago if there were not police to pull the bad guy out of the house then the people would do it. The bad guy that you are so defending would then be stoned to death. Do you want to go back to that? Do you really believe the bad guy should be left alone and continue his ways?

          • In the Old Testament there are only 613 regulations, most of which weren’t actually enforceable. Only a handful were punished by stoning. There were no prisons. Thieves had to restitute their victims rather than being “locked up”. There were no legally enforceable taxes nor any government bureaucrats. Is every detail of OT Israel libertarian? No. Is it nearly the kind of tyranny that secularists and statists like to make it out to be? No.

            RJ Rushdoony once said “Few things are more commonly misunderstood than the nature and meaning of theocracy. It is commonly assumed to be a dictatorial rule by self-appointed men who claim to rule for God. In reality, theocracy in Biblical law is the closest thing to a radical libertarianism that can be had.”

            I disagree with Rushdoony on this point primarily because I believe OT Israel, as a special covenant community of God (The “church” of the OT) was never intended to be fully libertarian, and that NT standards (for nations that are not entirely made up of people in the covenant) are more libertarian. But Rushdoony’s greater point is incredibly accurate, and that is to say that “theocracy” is far more libertarian than anything modern secular men are used to.

            • David regarding your 613 regulations, in those it explained the actions a judge needed to do and what not to do to the so called bad guy. Tell me David if the bad guy did not voluntarily go in front of the judge would they have said Oh well, we can not go into his house to kidnap him? David get real. David again you prove that libertarians are either or both stupid and have mental problems.Clover

              • Did I ever claim anything like this, clover? No. you are making your own strawmen about what theonomy is and what libertarianism is. Because you don’t like learning.

                If someone broke a regulation with a punishment attached to it, yes, they may well “go into a person’s house” to bring them to justice. What I was saying is that most of the 613 regulations weren’t actually enforced by human law.

                • David I totally understand libertarianism. It is nothing like you will find in any bible of yours. David I totally understand what true libertarianism is. David with the true form of libertarianism I would not have a problem following. It is impossible to have in the world that we have though. One very simple example is that you and Eric and others here say it is fine to drive drunk and you should not be touched. David that endangers and kills others. True Libertarianism is totally against hurting others. So in effect you are following your version of libertarianism and other people follow their version. Again many of those versions are either versions followed by self centered brats or versions that injure others. Clover
                  Then some versions say there should be no taxation. In my world there would be no roads, smog you would have to cut with a knife and that is hurting others and you would have a society ruled by guns. David I totally understand what libertarianism is but I am sure that you do not.

                  • You understand nothing about Libertarianism, Clover.

                    You’ve yet to comprehend its fundamental tenet: Non-aggression.

                    You confuse your fear of risk – a subjective – with the actuality of harm caused.

                    See today’s article about the veal pen. It’s all about you.

                  • Clover, what about all the people that are endangered by wrong address raids? What about all the people that are endangered by cops’ driving? The list goes on an on with the danger you and those like you have created. What about the people who have their lives ruined because they did something like sleep it off in the backseat of a parked car or traveled with a large sum of cash to purchase a truck for their business or a home? You only change the danger, you don’t remove it. Worse the danger you create is always there, ever present, intentionally seeking out victims. At least the danger you aim to get rid of is random and the person doesn’t actually seek to harm someone.

                • David – ” No. you are making your own strawmen about what theonomy is and what libertarianism is. ”

                  Said without irony?

                  While Clover is an idiot, you have no place commenting on what libertarianism is or is not. Here is a hint, it ain’t theocracy or theonomy. The idea that you consider yourself a libertarian while endorsing OT law would be hilarious if it were not so scary.

          • I just want to ask this as an open question. Is there anyone here who would deny that Biblical law is far more libertarian than the tyranny clover supports?

            • Dear David,

              That’s setting the bar pretty low isn’t it?

              I would answer that biblical law might be marginally less tyrannical than “clover law.” But hey, that’s no saying much.

              King James Bible
              Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people.

              Sounds pretty cloverish to me.

                • Yes.

                  Because a bunch of religious leaders (men) claimed they were empowered to do so by a god whose existence they asserted, and whom they asserted told them what to do.

                  Kind of like today’s state… only without the overt religious unction.

                  • Today’s state doesn’t even really claim divine command backing it, it just acts like it.

                    It was because of the covenental relationship of God with Israel, and because God himself rested on the seventh day.

                    • In ancient times the head of state was a god on earth. In more recent times the state was authorized by god. Today the state -is- god.

                • Also, you might want to consider how your brain processes information.

                  I wrote “Which Biblical law? “,
                  You ‘quoted’ “who’s Biblical law?”.

                  Vast difference.

                  Ask yourself how many times you have done something like this and how that could lead to some very erroneous beliefs on your part.

                    • OT?
                      OK. From all versions I have seen, yes, I do deny that Biblical law is far more libertarian than the tyranny clover supports?

                      From above;

                      “What version? Interpreted by who? Got a link to the EXACT, in god’s word, text?”

                      And again, have you reviewed http://godisimaginary.com/ ?

                      If not, why not.

                    • I briefly peaked at godisimaginary.com, and I’m not going to waste any more time because the guy that is writing there is clearly not open to truth but is a radical anti-theist that lacks basic logical argumentation and clearly has an agenda to attack believers.

                      For those of you who think there is some massive, insurmountable difference between OT law and libertarian law, you should probably read this:

                      http://americanvision.org/5675/theonomys-radical-libertarianism/

                      (BTW: There are theonomists who think the same thing, which is what this theonomist is addressing.)

                      And a discussion of the same issue from a Reformed libertarian (anarcho-capitalist) viewpoint:

                      http://reformedlibertarian.com/articles/philosophy/on-the-justification-of-libertarian-conclusions-and-a-comment-on-theonomy/

                    • David – “I briefly peaked at godisimaginary.com, and I’m not going to waste any more time because the guy that is writing there is clearly not open to truth but is a radical anti-theist that lacks basic logical argumentation and clearly has an agenda to attack believers.”

                      I thought as much. Which parts of his arguments are lacking in basic logical argumentation? Which ‘truth’ is he not open to? Or does that even matter as you clearly have drawn your conclusion without actually reviewing the available data and instead attack the messenger.

                      He raises very valid points yet you stick your fingers in your ears and ‘la la la’. Your programing is showing.

                      So, moving on, try this,

                      http://www.thereligiouscondition.com/

                      or this,

                      http://www.quora.com/What-role-does-cognitive-dissonance-play-in-religious-belief

                      Or just ignore that which might challenge your preconceptions and carry on with your confirmation biased myopic worldview.

                      Good luck with that.

                    • Bevin’s youtube video really told me all I needed to know about “godisimaginary”. I poked holes in all the issues with the video already a few days ago.

                      Atheists are predominately clueless. They may be intelligent when it comes to politics, economics, math, or whatever other subjects, but when it comes to the Bible they go irrational and ballistic. I have yet to really see an exception to this.

                    • “I poked holes in all the issues with the video already a few days ago.”

                      Well, I am sure YOU believe that. I must have missed it so please, tell me which of the points on the website you refuted. Convince me you are correct.

                      BTW, Which do you accept as being true? Any of them?

                      As for irrational, you have no place tossing that one from your precarious perch.

                    • Never mind, I found your idea of ‘poked holes’.

                      You are delusional and your responses are dismissive and arrogantly self-righteous.

                      I pity you.

                    • Dear David,

                      Me2 wrote: “He raises very valid points yet you stick your fingers in your ears and ‘la la la’. Your programing is showing.”

                      Sad to say, when it comes to this area of debate, Me2 is right.

                      It’s clear you came up against something that threatened a sacred cow, something “unthinkable.”

                      I mean that literally. Something you could not give yourself permission to contemplate, because you already sensed at a deeper, gut level, that it threatened everything you hold sacred.

                      So you dismissed it with a casual “He proved nothing” assertion and blanked it out of your mind.

                      Guess what? I know exactly what that feels like. At one time I still clung to minarchism. I read arguments for anarchism that threatened my emotionally reassuring, long-held attachment to “constitutionalism and the rule of law.” So I held out against it for several years.

                      Eventually however, my commitment to truth and reason prevailed and I let go of that attachment.

                      I don’t expect you to undergo a sudden Road to Damascus conversion. You feel yourself in the middle of a vast ocean, clinging to a life preserver called theism. You are convinced that without it, you will drown. You don’t realize you can simply let go of it and swim to shore.

                    • Bevin – “Something you could not give yourself permission to contemplate, because you already sensed at a deeper, gut level, that it threatened everything you hold sacred. ”

                      Precisely. In fact, if David would bother to read the links, this is explained in detail.

                      So two likely scenarios;

                      One is consciously so insecure in their belief that they must not risk viewing any counter argument.

                      OR

                      One is so deeply programmed that the subconscious will not let any counter argument even be processed. It simply just does not register in the brain.

                    • David’s a kid. A bright kid. But still just a kid. He will not appreciate what I’m writing now (about him) for at least another 10 years, when he has the perspective of time and acquired the lessons of experience. He cannot appreciate that – at 19 – he has only been fully conscious (attained the age of reason) for a small handful of years. A mere ten years ago, he was a nine-year-old child. For the majority of his life, he’s been taught – told – that “Jesus is Lord” and the social and familial pressure to accept this is enormous but so subtle he cannot (at the moment) appreciate it. He has a great deal to learn – but that will seem condescending and arrogant to him. Just as it would have seemed condescending and arrogant to me when I was 19.

                      It would be very interesting to time-travel forward a few decades and have a chat with 45-year-old David….

                    • Think what you want. I don’t have the time to search through an entire website and write a comprehensive response here. If you have one or two points you’d specifically like me to reply to on the site, I’m willing to do that. Link the specific points and I’ll rebut them.

                    • Dear David,

                      You don’t need to search through anything.

                      You know perfectly well that many versions of the bible call for stoning people to death even though they have not initiated force against others but were merely living their own lives.

                      One example is working on a day theists consider “Don’t work or be murdered Day.”

                      Work on this day, and we will stone you to death.

                      This is obviously an arbitrary, absurd, authoritarian, brutal, unlibertarian violation of another human being’s right to life, liberty, and property.

                      It simply cannot be reconciled with human freedom and dignity.

                      If you cannot provide a rational response to this, what could I possibly say that would register with your conscience?

                    • So God is imaginary?

                      Funny, but no one is capable of explaining the cosmos without reliance on a god.

                      Nuclear physics substantiates that matter is not eternal.

                      Where did matter come from if it is not eternal?

                      Please don’t embarrass yourself by saying “The Big Bang”- The so-called Big Bang presupposes the existence of matter. They say it already existed and that [LOL] “All the matter in the universe was compressed into a ball smaller than a period” ROTFL!

                      Where did the energy come from to set the galaxies in motion, and to sustain that motion? (Without violating the laws of thermodynamics, please)?

                      Oh, and life, itself. Even though the only changes in living creatures that have ever been observed are a lessening of genetic information; a progression from complex to less complex (the very opposite of what would be observed if evolution were possible), we are supposed to believe that the very opposite has always been in operation; acting upon matter which didn’t exist….and this is called “science”.

                      And the explanation for the missing energy; missing matter; missing order and intelligence needed to create complex entities with intricate symbiotic relationships is always: “Nature”; or “an unseen force”.

                      So basically they are creating a name for the force/entity which they can not see or touch; an invisible entity with the power and intelligence to create matter; life and energy- an invisible man in the sky if you will. So how does that differ from God?

                      Meanwhile, 1900 years before nuclear physics, the Apostle Paul said “…..we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. (Heb. 11:3) i.e. the tangible, visible physical creation was brought into existence out of things which did not yet exist/were invisible- and that is a lot more accurate and honest than trying ascribe such powers to a god whose power the “scientists” must acknowledge and ascribe to some unknown anonymous “force” or process, while denying his existence.

                    • Hi Mole,

                      It is one thing to posit that a supernatural entity (an uncaused cause) may exist. Quite another to insist, “Jesus is Lord.”

                      I don’t dismiss the possibility that an uncaused cause (“god,” if you like) may exist. Who knows? It is possible, certainly.

                      But the Christian conception?

                      That I very comfortably dismiss – for the same reason I dismiss Ra, Hxuitlopochtli, Zeus and numerous other now-discredited gods whose absolute reality was once believed in with the same certainty that afflicts believers in the Abrahamic gods today.

                    • @Bevin- And why are those things wrong?

                      “unlibertarian”? Sure. I’ll grant that. But wrong? You need an objective standard to prove it wrong.

                      The bottom line is that you are presupposing that it was wrong because you dislike it. I do not think it was wrong because God (the moral law giver) gave the town elders authority to execute the punishment at that particular time on authority of two or three witnesses.

                      I don’t see the problem.

                    • Moleman -“So God is imaginary? ”

                      That would be the claim of the author at the site but I would be less conclusive.

                      I would say that your god, David’s god and, as far as I can tell, all other believed-in gods are imaginary, as there is nothing provable, merely what your mind imagines them to be.

                      As for your ideas about science, come on. All (true) science is theory in effort to question and ultimately understand the unknown. To compare that to religion in any way is ludicrous.

                      Are you trying to suggest that your questionable conclusions regarding science somehow are an argument for the existence of a god?

                      Is there a god? I don’t know. I just get annoyed at the illogical, contrived rationalizations the god-heads try to demand I accept based on nothing more than their contradictory and malicious, semi-literate goat herder fiction. I get even more pissed when they inflict this crap on defenseless children as we end up with Davids.

                      BTW David, Bevin’s Sabbath, then #7. Why is your fairy tale the right one? Do you even see how you behave the same as all those you would claim believe in false gods?

                    • Bevin – “If you cannot provide a rational response to this…”

                      Well, I am becoming more convinced precognition exists… 🙂

                      David, did you really just defend stoning people to death for working on the Sabbath?

                    • He does.

                      Because “back then” it was ok. The Israelites were “covenanted” and God’s rules for them were different. If god says it’s ok to stone people to death, then it is. But god has changed his covenant and he doesn’t demand that people be stoned to death today.

                      But, tomorrow….

                    • I don’t think the command of the Sabbath is applicable for Christians today. Romans 14:5. So, no, I don’t support stoning people for breaking the Sabbath, though the Old Testament Israelites were required to do that in their covenental community.

                      But, I asserted that Bevin, as an atheist, has no good, objective reason why stoning people for breaking the Sabbath when God commands it is wrong.

                    • David,

                      Does it ever bother you that the “perfect” word of god is subject to parking brake 180s of this sort? That god can be bestial to people at one historical moment, but then change his mind – and issue a new ukase (the new testament) which by obvious inference could be rendered invalid at any time this god so chooses?

                      This appeals to you?

                    • Dear David,

                      “But, I asserted that Bevin, as an atheist, has no good, objective reason why stoning people for breaking the Sabbath when God commands it is wrong.”

                      I gave you my reasons repeatedly. You just refused to let them sink in.

                      The Golden Rule. I’m not going to repeat it again. I’ve already repeated nearly half a dozen times. No point.

                      If you can’t accept that human beings ought to treat others the way they want to be treated in return, there’s not much more I can say that would get through to you.

                    • David – “I don’t think the command of the Sabbath is applicable for Christians today. ”

                      So you just pick the bits you like and ignore the rest? By what criteria? Which of gods laws exactly do you feel it is OK to ignore today? Do you make it up as you go or is there a list?

                      With a ‘because god’ thrown in. facepalm.

                    • Dear David,

                      “… though the Old Testament Israelites were required to do that in their covenental community.”

                      So they were required by god to stone people to death back then, but not today.

                      Did god change his mind? Did he do a Roseanne Roseanna Danna and say, “Never mind”?

                      This is not really funny, because innocent people have been murdered because of such religious laws.

                      Do you really think this is “objective?”

                    • @Bevin- I agree with the Golden Rule. But that comes from Christ. In a moral vaccuum, assuming atheism, why shouldn’t I treat you however I feel like? Any reason you give is purely subjective. “If you can’t accept this I won’t argue with you” isn’t an argument. Sorry, but it isn’t.

                      @Me2- I didn’t just say it wasn’t applicable, I quoted a Biblical text. Now, there’s a bit of debate and interpretation that goes into it, but the mocking atheist comments of “you’re just making it up as you go” are wrong. There’s a Lutheran Satire video that goes into this idea, I’ll look it up later.

                    • Hi David,

                      Bevin’s pointed out to you several times now the historical fact that the Golden Rule is much, much older than Christianity and so cannot be claimed to derive from Christianity. I hope you will agree that this, at least, is not a debatable point.

                      You continue to assert that the Golden Rule (and NAP) are “subjective” – which is nonsense. It is objectively true that we are all men – and mortal. It is objectively true that we are all subject to suffering and loss. It is objectively true that suffering and loss are not desirable. It is objectively true that psychologically normal human beings would prefer to avoid suffering and loss. It is objectively true (logical) that if I desire to not be made to suffer and experience loss, I ought not to be the cause of suffering and loss.

                      Axiom: The Golden Rule.

                      Your position, on the other hand, requires no logical buttressing. It boils down to: Do this… and do not do that… because god (his priests, really) say so. Not because this is “good” (and that is “bad”) in some objective definable sense, but only because god (his priests) so ordain.

                      Your position would admit of any horror… provided god says so.

                    • Dear David,

                      “@Bevin- I agree with the Golden Rule. But that comes from Christ. ”

                      You obviously never even read my previous rebuttals.

                      The Golden Rule is well known to have predated the Christian era.

                      http://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/Ethic_of_reciprocity.html

                      The Golden Rule or ethic of reciprocity is a maxim,[2] an ethical code, or a morality,[3] that essentially states either of the following:

                      The Golden Rule is arguably the most essential basis for the modern concept of human rights, in which each individual has a right to just treatment, and a reciprocal responsibility to ensure justice for others.[4] A key element of the Golden Rule is that a person attempting to live by this rule treats all people with consideration, not just members of his or her in-group. The Golden Rule has its roots in a wide range of world cultures, and is a standard which different cultures use to resolve conflicts.[2][5]

                      The Golden Rule has a long history, and a great number of prominent religious figures and philosophers have restated its reciprocal, bilateral nature in various ways (not limited to the above forms).[2] As a concept, the Golden Rule has a history that long predates the term “Golden Rule” (or “Golden law”, as it was called from the 1670s).[2][6] The ethic of reciprocity was present in certain forms in the philosophies of ancient Babylon, Egypt, Persia, India, Greece, Judea, and China.

                      Examples of statements that mirror the Golden Rule appear in Ancient Egypt, for example in the story of The Eloquent Peasant which is dated to the Middle Kingdom of Egypt (c. 2040–1650 BCE): “Now this is the command: Do to the doer to cause that he do.”[7] Rushworth Kidder states that “the label ‘golden’ was applied by Confucius (551–479 B.C.), who wrote, ‘Here certainly is the golden maxim: Do not do to others that which we do not want them to do to us.'” Kidder notes that this framework appears prominently in many religions, including “Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism, and the rest of the world’s major religions”.[8]

                    • I asked “Which of gods laws exactly do you feel it is OK to ignore today? Do you make it up as you go or is there a list?”

                      I did not say “you’re just making it up as you go” .

                      Your comprehension and responses are starting to resemble Clover. So is how you manage to ignore the uncomfortable questions when directly asked.

                      Go read #7.

                    • Dear Eric,

                      Exactly!

                      As I was saying to David, he has a mind-boggling concept of objectivity.

                      He literally assured me that:

                      objective = God said it

                    • Bevin – “Agree. David means well.

                      He’s merely confused by his religious conditioning.

                      Not his fault really.”

                      Disagree. He is as the unthinking cop parroting decree without understanding. The tools to understand (or at least explore) have been placed at his feet and he intentionally ignores them. Then claims superior understanding of that for which there is no factual basis. He is delusional and arrogantly ignorant.

                      Someone else damaged his critical thinking, but it is he who refuses to recognize and repair it despite clear description of his defect. In fact, he goes to great lengths to avoid recognizing these issues, like claiming an entire website is wrong while at the very same time saying he had not bothered to actually read it. This is the defining trait of the hopelessly ignorant, ignore that which is a threat to belief.

                      Eric, in a couple of decades all you will find is David doing to his kids what someone did to him. I suspect this one will never recover.

                    • OK, there was a bunch of stuff mentioned since last time. I probably won’t get to all of them. But here’s my “off the cuff” attempt.

                      First off, regarding the sabbath:

                      I don’t think its “funny.” Its not like I get my jollies out of the thought of seeing people stoned to death for breaking the sabbath, or sleeping with other men, or whatever.

                      Ultimately, a lot of this debate have come to two separate things, that are ultimately getting lumped together. They are:

                      1. Did God (the Creator of the Universe and everything in it, including man) really command X, Y, and Z? Or was it just some people (lying, high, whatever) that were claiming to be able to speak for God?

                      2. Say God (defined in #1) did command X, Y, and Z. Does this present a moral obligation to do X, Y, and Z?

                      I want to ask a question here, to see where we understand.

                      For the sake of argument, assume God (define above) exists, and that the Bible’s claims about itself as revealed in 2 Timothy 3:16 are true. Would that, if true, provide a moral obligation to obey what the Bible says, in your view? Or would you still ignore God, even assuming that?

                      Now, regarding the age thing, I don’t really find it insulting or arrogant so much as kind of funny, considering there are a lot of older people in my life that think the main reason I’m against the government is because I’m young, and so forth.

                    • David -“For the sake of argument, assume God (define above) exists, and that the Bible’s claims about itself as revealed in 2 Timothy 3:16 are true. ”

                      Which version? Any of these? Note carefully, some say ‘inspired by god’, others say ‘breathed by god’. Not the only contradictory bit either.

                      (KJ21)All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,

                      (AMP) Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action),

                      (YLT) every Writing [is] God-breathed, and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for setting aright, for instruction that [is] in righteousness,

                      (OJB) The entire Kitvei HaKodesh is Hashem-breathed and useful for hora’ah (teaching), for reproof, for correction, for training in tzedek,

                      (PHILLIPS) All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the faith and correcting error, for re-setting the direction of a man’s life and training him in good living.

                      In fact, how about you tell us all which of the below is the TRUE word of god so we call be on the same page. OK?

                      21st Century King James Version (KJ21)
                      American Standard Version (ASV)
                      Amplified Bible (AMP)
                      Common English Bible (CEB) Apocrypha
                      Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
                      Contemporary English Version (CEV)
                      Darby Translation (DARBY)
                      Disciples’ Literal New Testament (DLNT) NT
                      Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA) Apocrypha
                      Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
                      English Standard Version (ESV)
                      English Standard Version Anglicised (ESVUK)
                      Expanded Bible (EXB)
                      1599 Geneva Bible (GNV)
                      GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
                      Good News Translation (GNT) Apocrypha
                      Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
                      International Standard Version (ISV)
                      J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS) NT
                      Jubilee Bible 2000 (JUB)
                      King James Version (KJV)
                      Authorized (King James) Version (AKJV)
                      Lexham English Bible (LEB)
                      Living Bible (TLB)
                      The Message (MSG)
                      Modern English Version (MEV)
                      Mounce Reverse-Interlinear New Testament (MOUNCE) NT
                      Names of God Bible (NOG)
                      New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
                      New American Standard Bible (NASB)
                      New Century Version (NCV)
                      New English Translation (NET Bible)
                      New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
                      New International Version (NIV)
                      New International Version – UK (NIVUK)
                      New King James Version (NKJV)
                      New Life Version (NLV)
                      New Living Translation (NLT)
                      New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) Apocrypha
                      New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA) Apocrypha
                      New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)
                      New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)
                      Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)
                      Revised Standard Version (RSV) Apocrypha
                      Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE)
                      The Voice (VOICE)
                      World English Bible (WEB)
                      Worldwide English (New Testament) (WE) NT
                      Wycliffe Bible (WYC)
                      Young’s Literal Translation (YLT)

                    • Yup!

                      And, what about all the scripture thrown in the woods by Constantine’s priests? The Christian response is that god guided their hand (and redacted the texts). But this implies that all the texts thrown in the woods at the Council of Nicea were not “the word of god” … even though pre-Nicean Christians regarded them as such. Were they wrong? How? Why? Apparently, for several hundred years, God allowed his “children” to believe in the wrong “word.”

                      How could “the one true god” make such mistakes?

                      I am utterly baffled by the deference to the authority of a bunch of of state priests and a thug dictator (Constantine). These guys get together, pick and choose the stuff they like – and toss what they don’t … and – hey! presto! – the result is the “holy” and “perfect” word o’ god.

                      And later on, King James (who, ironically, was probably homosexual).

                      Indeed, it is the deference to authority qua authority that troubles me most about Christianity – and religion generally.

                      It smells of rat.

                    • Dear Me2,

                      “Eric, in a couple of decades all you will find is David doing to his kids what someone did to him. I suspect this one will never recover.”

                      That’s definitely a real concern. Not something actionable of course from an anacap perspective. But definitely a real concern.

                      It’s an interesting question. Psychologists know that victims of parental abuse often become victimizers themselves.

                      One feels sorry for the victim of course. I felt sorry for David. He is a victim of parental indoctrination in an irrational belief system. So in a moment of pity, I let him off the hook.

                      But somewhere along the timeline, many victims become victimizers themselves. At that point they no longer merit sympathy, but instead deserve condemnation.

                      At what point in time do we mark transition from one to the other? Frankly, I’m not entirely sure.

                      But what you have been saying to David in your posts since is unquestionably dead on the mark. He is not merely ignorant of the arguments that demolish his beliefs. He is wilfully ignorant.

                      He is a textbook case of “There are none so blind as those who will not see.”

                      “I once was lost but now am found. Was blind, but now I see.”
                      — Lyrics to religious hymn Amazing Grace

                      Will David ever be found? Will David ever see?

                      Giant question mark.

                    • I continue to by mystified by the apparent inability of clearly bright people (David) to extrapolate… .

                      Only little children believe in Santa. Yet many adults believe with equal ardor in Jesus (or Allah, etc.).

                      What is the difference?

                      Both are mythical figures based on probably real historic personages. But these were just men. Claims made for more-than-man-ness are pure assertion that ultimately come down to: It is written/have faith.

                      He sees you when you’re sleeping… he knows when you’re awake… he knows if you’ve been bad or good…

                      None come to the father except through the son…

                      Und so weiter.

                    • So, Me2- “science is just theory”? Really! I thought science was the quest for that which was demonstrable; observable and repeatable?

                      Yet of course, (and this point you seem to have purposely missed) your so-called science is just as reliant upon the existence of an invisible, untestable; unknowable higer power as any religion, because I can not read any science textbook; report; lecture; or discussion, without them having to resort to their unknown god whenever the subject of cosmology; evolution; astronomy; geology, etc. comes up.

                      They ADMIT to the existence of A god; Their god is just a different one (conveniently) than the God of Scripture.

                    • Hi Mole,

                      Burt which “scripture”? Each major religion (past and present) has its holy writ. On what basis is, say, the Egyptian Book of the Dead any less “holy” than the Christian Bible? People once believed it described the truth of the afterlife, deity, “god’s plan” – and so on – as much as some people believe the same thing about the Bible today.

                      I see no reason to take either as more than words put on paper (or papyrus, as the case may be) by men. Men working through their own existential angst (which we all must work through).

                      Again: I admit the possibility of something “more” than meets our eye. I’d be a fool to claim I know everything, or ever could know everything. The same goes for everyone.

                      But it’s a very different thing to assert – with absolute certainty – that Christianity (with all its obvious derivations from older religions, all its obvious contradictions, its regionalism, its tribalism, its relative newness, etc.) is the one and only “true” religion.

                    • Moleman – “science is just theory”

                      The full sentence – “All (true) science is theory in effort to question and ultimately understand the unknown”

                      At least quote all of what I said correctly. It seems you and David share a talent for ‘interpreting’ what is written.

                      Moleman – “I thought science was the quest for that which was demonstrable; observable and repeatable?”

                      Did I claim it was not?

                      Moleman – “Yet of course, (and this point you seem to have purposely missed) your so-called science is just as reliant upon the existence of an invisible, untestable; unknowable higer(sic) power as any religion, because I can not read any science textbook; report; lecture; or discussion, without them having to resort to their unknown god whenever the subject of cosmology; evolution; astronomy; geology, etc. comes up. ”

                      I did not miss it. I would not accept a proof that relied on an ‘unknown god’ as you put it. Nice strawman. Why do you try to paint me as supporting that which I have never endorsed? I make no claims that science has THE ANSWER. That is a god-folk claim.

                      Moleman – “They ADMIT to the existence of A god; Their god is just a different one (conveniently) than the God of Scripture.”

                      Standard ‘but they do it too’ defense of ones own ridiculous beliefs. Lame. Also, kind of idiotic as it is also an own goal as you have essentially said ‘but they are just as delusional as we are’.

                      Maybe ask me what I think before you start claiming to know. What precise scientific concept is it that requires ‘unknown god’. Be specific instead of your shotgun approach. Then maybe ask me if I believe it to be conclusive or still unresolved. Either way, have a little respect for the fact that I make no claims that science has THE ANSWER.

                      BTW ‘science’ (as I accept it) is not some monotheistic entity with dogma at its core.

                    • Dear Eric,

                      “Only little children believe in Santa. Yet many adults believe with equal ardor in Jesus (or Allah, etc.). ”

                      It baffles me as well. You encounter it and you scratch your head wondering, “How the hell can anyone know that Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy are unreal, yet somehow believe that “Yaweh/God/Allah” are real???

                      It boggles the mind.

                      I suppose it puts Keynesian economics and belief in Big Government as a father figure in perspective.

                      Otherwise clear-headed people can actually form the same irrational attachment to a father figure in Washington as they do to a father figure in the clouds, looking over them.

                    • The Sabbath IS just as applicable today as ever. The reason we don’t stone people for not observing it, is the same reason we don’t stone murderers and adulterers- because God has not commanded His followers to forcibly inflict His laws on the world. God will do that, when He returns. Today, those of us who believe, voluntarily abide by God’s laws, so as to not take upon ourselves more sin (Which we were redeemed from by Jesus Christ); and because those laws are written in our hearts and minds [Rom 2:15. Heb 8:10].

                      David, the atheists are right to point out the contradiction of picking and choosing what laws we follow. This is why I’ve said previously that 98% of the so-called Christian churches” are actually preaching AGAINST Biblical doctrine. Check out Matt. 24:20- which shows that the Sabbath is still in force at the time of the tribulation; and Zech 14:16- the nations will be keeping the Feast Of Tabernacles in the Millennium!

                    • Bevin, it is not surprising that The Golden Rule is mirrored in every culture- just as is The Flood or the institution of marriage or the 7-day week. All having originated from a common place. Just as most cultures accept the law of gravity.

                      I can reference my Bible as being the oldest verifiable source of all of those things- having stated them in documented form for over 3500 years. Can you name another book that meets suich a challenge?

                  • I certainly hope this site does not degenerate into a Bible discussion board. A certain amount of it may be of historical interest, but I have found that trying to engage the True Believers on a scientific level is only a little less painful than beating one’s head against a board full of sharp, protruding nails or pounding one’s genitals with a 5-pound sledgehammer.

                    I went through this (again) just recently at a family gathering, this is pretty much verbatim how it went:

                    True Believer says “I’m not descended from any ape!”

                    I say, “That’s not what the theory of evolution says, it states that we and the apes share a common ancestor, and that differentiation in species arises from natural selection.”

                    True Believer: “I’m not descended from any ape and that’s only a theory!”

                    I say, “Do you understand what constitutes a theory in science and how it differs from mere conjecture? How it needs to be consistent with observation, provide testable predictions, and provide conditions under which it would be falsifiable?”

                    True Believer: “I’m not descended from any ape! And how do you explain that the earth and the planets are perfectly round?”

                    I say, “They are not perfectly round. They are distorted by their rotation. The earth is an ellipsoid flatter at the poles and bulging at the equator. Additionally, orbits are not round, they are elliptical.”

                    True Believer: [laughs hysterically, it’s turtles all the way down to him]

                    And so on and so on, ad nauseum. You probably would get further talking to the wall.

                    • Dear Jason,

                      I’ve had many similar discussions, trust me.

                      But the combination of anarchist and Christian is so strange curiosity got the better of me.

                    • Indeed. I am positive that David has not accepted anything written here unless it was already his belief. He knows the truth and no fact could convince him otherwise. No inconsistency or contradiction cannot be rationalized by his faith.

                      I have stated here before that once ‘because god’ is part of the conversation, rational debate is impossible. David was kind enouh to provide the example for us today.

                    • Morning, Me2!

                      It’s strange, isn’t it?

                      Per your comment, if one were to substitute “because Ra” (or “because Huixtlopochtli”) for “because god” (i.e., Jesus/the Bible, etc.) in David’s various arguments, the fallacy ought to be luminously obvious.

                      And yet, David remains certain of his various beliefs “because god” (that is, his god) and sees no irony, no cause for pause.

                      This is not an uncommon. By which I mean, I personally have known many otherwise obviously bright people who seem immune to this (to me) pretty simple assault of logic on their beliefs. I marvel that they can be, on the one hand, completely dismissive of Ra, Zeus, Huixtlopochtli, Crom… the endless litany of other gods… yet glowingly and absolutely certain of the reality of their god – whose existence is just as tenuous if the same rules of evidence (and logic) apply.

                      Just, baffling.

                    • The Christian you were talking to sounds like of like clover. Simply repeating himself over and over and ignoring what has been said.

                      I don’t do that.

                    • The main reason I brought up theology was because I had questions for other Christian anarchists about how best to deal with Christian statists. That discussion is necessarily doctrinal to some degree, and thus I would understand if Eric did not want it to take place here, but the goal was never really to start debating with atheists on religion.

                      But, as far as debate goes, I can’t help myself. That annoys a lot of people. But I didn’t start it.

                    • Hi David,

                      Discussing religious belief is ultimately circular because it’s based on belief, not facts. Each religious person believes absolutely in the verity of his beliefs – and so (at least implicitly) disbelieves the beliefs held by others, who believe in a different god.

                      It is very odd!

                    • Dear David,

                      Actually, you did. You even conceded it when you wrote:

                      “I hate to open that can of worms again, but… ” some time ago.

                      But actually, that’s okay. As long as you don’t mind atheists disagreeing with you.

                      With Eric’s approval of course, since it is his website.

                    • Ditto, Jason…

                      I hope David will begin to at least consider some of the logical/factual objections raised. But – per Ignatius Loyola – it is very hard to undo childhood programming of this sort. The human brain is a very interesting thing. You and I are startled by David’s apparent inability to grasp what – to us – seem to be obvious fallacies (or at least, things that ought to give a bright person some cause for pause) with regard to his beliefs… while at the same time, he is baffled by our lack of adoration for the god(s) of the Bible, whose reality he is utterly convinced of.

                    • Since David has yet to concede even the slightest error in his belief and asserts that he possesses superior knowledge to us regarding god,

                      1 Corinthians 8:2

                      I await the torrent of rationalizing BS.

                    • Maybe David can learn from Bert. But I suppose the first quote makes that unlikely.

                      “A stupid man’s report of what a clever man says can never be accurate, because he unconsciously translates what he hears into something he can understand.” – Bertrand Russell

                      “If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence. The origin of myths is explained in this way.” – Bertrand Russell

                      So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence. – Bertrand Russell

                      The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. – Bertrand Russell

                      What the world needs is not dogma but an attitude of scientific inquiry combined with a belief that the torture of millions is not desirable, whether inflicted by Stalin or by a Deity imagined in the likeness of the believer. – Bertrand Russell

                      Not to be absolutely certain is, I think, one of the essential things in rationality. – Bertrand Russell

                      The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible. – Bertrand Russell

                      The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately. – Bertrand Russell

                      Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones. – Bertrand Russell

                      And finally,

                      Passive acceptance of the teacher’s wisdom is easy to most boys and girls. It involves no effort of independent thought, and seems rational because the teacher knows more than his pupils; it is moreover the way to win the favour of the teacher unless he is a very exceptional man. Yet the habit of passive acceptance is a disastrous one in later life. It causes man to seek and to accept a leader, and to accept as a leader whoever is established in that position.
                      – Bertrand Russell

                    • Eric, the problem is that everything we believe is based on religious assumptions. Assumption of the veracity of logic is axiomatic, since denial of logic requires the use of logic. But assumption of empiricism is not an assumption which is logically warranted. Everything you believe is religious. Everything I believe is religious. We are all religious people.

                      And no, I don’t mind atheists disagreeing with me. I’m not “Baffled” that atheists disagree with me. I’d actually be baffled if they didn’t.

                    • “Eric, the problem is that everything we believe is based on religious assumptions.”

                      Nonsense. Is 2+2=4 a matter of belief?

                      You believe in the existence of god. My lack of belief in this god of yours is not “religious.” It is skepticism in the face of mere assertion.

                      I am under no obligation to “just believe” anything. It is your obligation to back up your stated beliefs with facts.

                      Or do you believe that if I assert the existence of a Flying Spaghetti Monster – and you do not accept this as true – then your lack of belief in my Spaghetti Monster is merely a religious fetish, a refusal to accept the “truth” of my “word”?

                    • Eric – “David’s a kid. A bright kid. But still just a kid. ”

                      David – “Everything you believe is religious. Everything I believe is religious. We are all religious people.”

                      Still want to hold to your first judgement Eric?

                    • Jason Flinders said

                      “I certainly hope this site does not degenerate into a Bible discussion board. A certain amount of it may be of historical interest, but I have found that trying to engage the True Believers on a scientific level is only a little less painful than beating one’s head against a board full of sharp, protruding nails or pounding one’s genitals with a 5-pound sledgehammer.”

                      Jason, I have already illustrated how your unproven, unproveable theory is just as dependent upon a god, as is Creationism.

                      Your theory is in crisis, because instead of being substantiated by evidence, as Darwin predicted; it is confounded more and more by the ever-increasing mounds of evidence; and newer discoveries proving just how complex life is; and just how intricate the symbiotic relationships are- to the point where your theory is essentially dead in the scientific community, and has become just the province of academia- as it is their religion- and indeed is a religion, because it relies upon an unseen, unprovable; untestable force/being; and because the processes which it claims to have happened have never been observed; reproduced or substantiated as ever having happened- but in-fact, contradict the very definition of science and it’s laws.

                      And why would you object to such a discussion here? Do we not always discuss numerous philosophies; systems of law; beliefs; and value systems here?

                    • Bevin says

                      But the combination of anarchist and Christian is so strange curiosity got the better of me.

                      Bev, why should that seem strange to you? Where do you thinkl our American Founding Fathers got their ideas that all men should be entitled to free speech; and the right to privacy; etc.?

                      They got it from the observation that God is not at this time enforcing His will/law forcibly on people.

                      If it is God’s will that such be the case during this period of time, how could I, as a believer in God, take upon myself the authority to inflict His laws or anyone else’s on the general public?

                      Nor is it a contradiction that I abide by God’s laws in my life- just as all here abide by some form of law or value system- whether it be some system in which they believe, or one which they have made up of their own mind. ; and why should such things take precedence or have superiority over my “value system”?

                    • Dear MM,

                      Actually, your comments on Darwinian evolution “proved too much.”

                      You noted that scientific theories can be disproven, and went “Ha! See!”

                      You don’t seem to understand that champions of science have always insisted that scientific theories can be disproven, from day one.

                      Scientific theories can be disproven, because they can be proven. The one necessarily implies the other. That is why when they are proven, the theory carries weight.

                      Religious dogma, by contrast, cannot be disproven (in the mind of the believer) because they were never proven in the first place.

                      They were simply unfounded assumptions that the faithful cling to regardless of how much evidence is offered up.

                      Key Christian theologians have even conceded this flagrant confirmation bias openly.

                      “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.” – Saint Augustine

                    • Dear MM,

                      Wrong.

                      Most of the Founders were Deists, NOT Christians. They could not reconcile orthodox religious faith with their minarchist libertarianism, so they posited a god who created the universe, but then bugged out and left us to our own devices. That made free will and the sovereignty of man possible in their minds.

                      None of the Founding Fathers were atheists. Most of the Founders were Deists, which is to say they thought the universe had a creator, but that he does not concern himself with the daily lives of humans, and does not directly communicate with humans, either by revelation or by sacred books. They spoke often of God, (Nature’s God or the God of Nature), but this was not the God of the bible. They did not deny that there was a person called Jesus, and praised him for his benevolent teachings, but they flatly denied his divinity. Some people speculate that if Charles Darwin had lived a century earlier, the Founding Fathers would have had a basis for accepting naturalistic origins of life, and they would have been atheists. We’ll never know; but by reading their own writings, it’s clear that most of them were opposed to the bible, and the teachings of Christianity in particular.

                      http://freethought.mbdojo.com/foundingfathers.html

                      Thomas Paine, the most anarchistic of the Founders, authored “The Age of Reason,” a no punches pulled denunciation of religious dogmatism.

                      The Age of Reason Quotes

                      “It is from the Bible that man has learned cruelty, rapine, and murder; for the belief of a cruel God makes a cruel man.”
                      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

                      “Of all the systems of religion that ever were invented, there is no more derogatory to the Almighty, more unedifying to man, more repugnant to reason, and more contradictory to itself than this thing called Christianity. Too absurd for belief, too impossible to convince, and too inconsistent for practice, it renders the heart torpid or produces only atheists or fanatics. As an engine of power, it serves the purpose of despotism, and as a means of wealth, the avarice of priests, but so far as respects the good of man in general it leads to nothing here or hereafter.”
                      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

                      “Each of those churches shows certain books, which they call revelation, or the Word of God. The Jews say that their Word of God was given by God to Moses face to face; the Christians say, that their Word of God came by divine inspiration; and the Turks say, that their Word of God (the Koran) was brought by an angel from heaven. Each of those churches accuses the other of unbelief; and, for my own part, I disbelieve them all.”
                      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

                      “What is it the Bible teaches us? — rapine, cruelty, and murder. What is it the Testament teaches us? — to believe that the Almighty committed debauchery with a woman engaged to be married; and the belief of this debauchery is called faith.”
                      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

                      “The study of theology, as it stands in Christian churches, is the study of nothing; it is founded on nothing; it rests on no principles; it proceeds by no authorities; it has no data; it can demonstrate nothing; and it admits of no conclusion. Not anything can be studied as a science, without our being in possession of the principles upon which it is founded; and as this is the case with Christian theology, it is therefore the study of nothing.”
                      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

              • Me2, there is only one Bible- the one that has been carried down from the majority of extant manuscripts; referenced literally in several hundred-thousand citations in ancient literature; and represented in vernacular Bibles in many languages throughout the history of the last 2000 years.

                The confusion which you suffer from, is due to the modern practice of the last few years, in which a plethora of different bibles have been foisted upon the market- and those faux bibles all have one thing in common: They are representative of basically TWO manuscripts (which do not even agree with one another) which were never accepted by the Christian community; AND those “new translations” do not even accurately translate those manuscripts on which they purport to be based- but just literally make-up stuff to suit their own agendas- the ultimate purpose of which is to destroy Christianity- and they have had great success at that.

                The KJV, and the various older Bibles in it’s lineage (such as the Tyndale; Bishops; Matthews; Geneva….) are the only true Bibles which have remained consistently true to the accepted texts of Holy scripture.

                The arguments you are plying on here and on David are all too “pat”; and all easily refuted by all but the very young and inexperienced- and such arguments are all very intellectually dishonest- or based on the ignorance of those who make them, and show their lack of knowledge in such things as The Bible; history; and language.

                • Moleman says: “there is only one bible.”

                  wikipedia says: “There is no single “Bible” and many Bibles with varying contents exist.”

                  Wikipedia is a shared resource that anyone on earth can edit. An earth which is majority judeo-christian I would remind everyone.

                  Would you really expect us to choose your individual beliefs as our authority. Though you truly are our fellow traveler and kindred spirit, moleman. Or would you rather expect us to side with the entire population of the planet earth?

                  [Here is full text of wikipedia article introductory section:
                  “The Bible is a canonical collection of texts sacred in Judaism and Christianity. There is no single “Bible” and many Bibles with varying contents exist. The term Bible is shared between Judaism and Christianity, although the contents of each of their collections of canonical texts is not the same. Different religious groups include different books within their Biblical canons, in different orders, and sometimes divide or combine books, or incorporate additional material into canonical books.”]

                  More important than the the number of bibles and gods that have so far existed. Is the one single important new doctrine, that has only enjoyed a renaissance since 1961. It is known as the NAP and is only now gaining a powerful presence among the minority independent and enlightened minds still found today in the world.

                  The NAP is a transformative doctrine. If you are to base your life on it, you will have to make room for it in your heart and mind.

                  There was a time when it was believed that the Earth was the center of the solar system. The christian authorities went so far as to murder those who publicly claimed this was not so.

                  But I think even you would admit the sun is the center of the solar system. Regardless of what the scriptures claim.

                  Statists of the guns. And statists of the gods. Both of these predominate systems of our planet today have the wrong thing at the center.

                  They believe the world revolves around violence. That the strong are ordained by earthly rulers, to subjugate and rule over the meek. That there is a predator class and a prey class.

                  Christianity to this point has sought to modify this doctrine. But it has not yet gone far enough. It has said that all people are called by the gods to serve as the prey class. And that only the gods are to reign as the predator class.

                  While arguably an improvement over what came before it. Christianity as it is currently configured remains a flawed system. Because it posits a system of weak prey, orbiting the center which consists of strong predatory authorities.

                  That is why all current gods must be discarded. Especially the judeo christian gods.

                  Under the “gospel” of the NAP, there is to be no violence at the center of our communities. Or at our world at large.

                  That means a whole new era of possibility is close at hand. Because all manner of wonders become possible when we refuse to see each other as predators and prey.

                  At the center of this new system, there will be productive entrepreneurial men of vision. Beautiful nurturing women of virtue and unlimited affection. And far better than what what my limited poetic mind can articulate.

                  Accepting the NAP as your personal lord and savior. Means rejecting the aphorism: “You’re either the butcher or you’re cattle.” It means rejecting the morality of the Walking Dead, and of the worldwide moralities of entire mainstream world.

                  All the old truths and ways are to be remembered and preserved. But none of them need be followed nor adhered to. Especially not by physical force and subjugation of one group over another group.

                  “You’ve been lied to your entire life, By people who have been lied to their entire lives, For the benefit of those who desire power over you”. – Stefan Molyneux

                  This 9 1/2 minute video is the best ‘quick and dirty’ unwordy explanation of non-aggression I’ve ever seen.

                  • Tor,

                    Uh…no. Wikipedia does not even come close to telling the whole story, nor the truth.

                    LSS, if a Christian quoted Scripture in Gothic in AD350; Anglo-Saxon in 650AD; or Old English 1300; or Danish in 1599, they would all be saying the same thing, because the various “different Bibles” WHICH WERE USED AND ACCEPTED by Christians ALL come from the same manuscript family- and are identical to what became the Textus Receptus. Ditto the literally hundreds of thousands of citations of scripture throughout history in both secular and Christian literature.

                    The only “different” bibles, are a tiny minority of texts which were never widely accepted as legitimate scripture- such as Siniaticus and Vaticanus- TWO manuscripts- one of which was found in the garbage can of a Catholic monastary- those, upon which the modern liberal perversions are based- vs. the thousands of manuscripts; literary citations; and vernacular Bibles from which thre REAL Bible is derived.

                    To anyone who is educated on the realities of the subject, it’s not even an issue.

                    What’s more, even concerning the differences between the accepted majority of texts, vs. the handful of contradictory rejected texts, the differences would be considered minor in secular terms- the real Bible might say “Jesus” where spurious Alexandrian texts say “he”. -stuff like that.

                    Now the funny thing is, when it comes to the subject in whose context this matter was being discussed, i.e. Biblical law- there are virtually NO DIFFERENCES between the accepted textual line and the spurious- they are virtually identical as far as the Pentateuch goes- just as they are almost identical Jewish versions of the same.

                    That being the case, do you realize that that means that there is more actual evidence for the accurate preservation of the Pentateuch than for any other literary text in the history of the WORLD?

                    The only “difference”, again, is in these modern perverions of the last 50 years or so, which are based on the spurious non-accepted texts; AND most of those differences are not even supported by THOSE texts- but rather, are just purposeful deliberate mistranslations by the translators- for instance: The NIV’s use of the word “rape” in Deut. 22:28. That is a pure invention of the perverted translators, and has support in ANY manuscript (It is talking about fornication- in which the man must then pay the dowry and marry the girl; the penalty for rape is DEATH, not marriage).

                    But this sort of thing is only a modern issue, created by radical liberals, like Virginia Mollenkott, whose agenda is to destroy the Scriptures and Christianity itself.

                    And the funny thing is, their spurious “scriptures” are in constant change- both the underlying texts, which are changed every few years- and the “translations” themselves- even where the underlying texts have not changed. – i.e. the NIV of 1984 is radically different than the NIV of today.

                    And it’s hilarious- because they don’t change it to make it more true to it’s underlying text- but rather to support their political agendas- i.e. they’ll re-do a translation to make it gender neutral, because they want it to be gender neutral.

                    Sorry, but crap like that has no legitimate business being even discussed in the same context with actual Scripture. The only reason it could even be considered in such a context, is because it is now sold in “Christian” book stores and called a Bible.

                    On the other hand, the Bible I read, the KJV, is the same today as it was in 1611 (Please don’t tell me it is different because “battle” was spelled “battell” in the actual 1611 printing….)

                    And other than the spelling or the use of some different words which retain the very same meaning, it is the same as the Bible that was used in 1350….and if you translate the Gothic of 350 into modern English, it is the same as that! If you translate the Greek or Latin of Polycarp (1st-2nd century AD) or Iraeneus (2nd century), it matches the KJV!

                    Want to talk about the Dead Sea scrolls? The Septuagint? The Masoretic Text? All the preserved writings of the Jews of the OId Testament?

                    When all these things are considered, it is IGNORANT to try and maintain that there is no preserved Scripture. Only moderns could put forth such an argument- and only to those who don’t know any better; and only because of the plethora of modern liberal non-translations which have flooded the market as of late- all produced by non-believers who have a politcal agenda- and NO textual basis for their perversions, even among the spurious minority texts.

                  • Oh just curious too. David, can you confirm that Moleman is following the TRUE word for us?

                    Any other religious folks want to confirm Moleman’s assertion of the one true book?

                • “The arguments you are plying on here and on David are all too “pat”; and all easily refuted by all but the very young and inexperienced- and such arguments are all very intellectually dishonest- or based on the ignorance of those who make them, and show their lack of knowledge in such things as The Bible; history; and language.”

                  So refute. No sophistry, no self-referential claims. I have yet to see you do so.

                  Unless I have missed something, your arguments can be summed up as ‘you just don’t understand’, with nothing to support the claim.

                  • Me2

                    My understanding is that the bible was written primarily in Hebrew (Old Testament) and Greek (Koine Greek) (New Testament). I think (but am not sure) there were a few books written in Aramaic.

                    I think that most of the translations of the bible go back to the original sources (writings) of either the Greek or the Hebrew. I have read KJV new testament and found some of the translations to use different words than what I would have chosen. (This is from one that does not specialize in language.)

                    I guess my point is that I think it is important to go back to the original languages (go to the source) and compare them to the translation being read.

                    What should “modern” people do today that cannot read (or understand) the ancient texts?

                    Although I can read and understand some NT Greek, I have much easier time understanding English. Even for English meanings and words can change over time. (I am thinking of Shakespeare and Chaucer). The original English (Old or Middle) is not always easy for me to understand without some notes of explanation.

                    To paraphrase my history teacher: “We are prisoners of our sources.”

                    Because I cannot always read/comprehend other languages (both modern and ancient) I am dependent on accurate translations that retain the original meaning and intent of the source material.

                    A poor and/or inaccurate translation (regardless of reason) can distort and/or change the meaning of the original source material. (Anyone ever play telephone?)

                    I have not written much on this discussion, since I do not much time available. I have stated my belief in God, but I know that I am a poor orator. If others will believe in God, it will not be from my ability to speak. Hopefully my example will be more eloquent and effective than any words I could use. (Actions speak louder than words).

                    I’ll leave with NT Greek and some English translations.

                    1 Corinthians 13:4
                    Nestle GNT 1904 –Ἡ ἀγάπη μακροθυμεῖ, χρηστεύεται ἡ ἀγάπη, οὐ ζηλοῖ, ἡ ἀγάπη οὐ περπερεύεται, οὐ φυσιοῦται,
                    1 Corinthians 13:4
                    New International Version
                    Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

                    New Living Translation
                    Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud

                    English Standard Version
                    Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant

                    New American Standard Bible
                    Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,

                    King James Bible
                    Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

                    Holman Christian Standard Bible
                    Love is patient, love is kind. Love does not envy, is not boastful, is not conceited,

                    International Standard Version
                    Love is always patient; love is always kind; love is never envious or arrogant with pride. Nor is she conceited,

                    NET Bible
                    Love is patient, love is kind, it is not envious. Love does not brag, it is not puffed up.

                    Aramaic Bible in Plain English
                    Love is patient and sweet; love does not envy; love is not upset neither puffed up.

                    GOD’S WORD® Translation
                    Love is patient. Love is kind. Love isn’t jealous. It doesn’t sing its own praises. It isn’t arrogant.

                    Jubilee Bible 2000
                    Charity suffers long and is benign; charity envies not; charity does nothing without due reason, is not puffed up,

                    King James 2000 Bible
                    Love suffers long, and is kind; love envies not; love vaunts not itself, is not puffed up,

                    American King James Version
                    Charity suffers long, and is kind; charity envies not; charity braggs not itself, is not puffed up,

                    American Standard Version
                    Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

                    Douay-Rheims Bible
                    Charity is patient, is kind: charity envieth not, dealeth not perversely; is not puffed up;

                    Darby Bible Translation
                    Love has long patience, is kind; love is not emulous [of others]; love is not insolent and rash, is not puffed up,

                    English Revised Version
                    Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

                    Webster’s Bible Translation
                    Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

                    Weymouth New Testament
                    Love is patient and kind. Love knows neither envy nor jealousy. Love is not forward and self-assertive, nor boastful and conceited.

                    World English Bible
                    Love is patient and is kind; love doesn’t envy. Love doesn’t brag, is not proud,

                    Young’s Literal Translation
                    The love is long-suffering, it is kind, the love doth not envy, the love doth not vaunt itself, is not puffed up,

                    • Thanks Mithrandir.

                      To be clear, I have no problem with belief.

                      I have a major problem with those so arrogant that they claim to know the truth yet show quite clearly that all they know is based on assumption and rhetoric. I get even more annoyed when they appeal to their own authority, trot out some BS sophistry, claim victory and run off ignoring the contradictions and logic errors raised regarding their posts. It’s like dealing with an ADD 8 year old.

                      Personally, I would prefer the way this site was before David arrived, not religion free but free from religion being posted into EVERY debate.

                      I expressed as much long ago. I ignored the growing ‘because god’ for a long time. Now, since it will not go away, I will happily tear the faulty reasoning poster a new one without regard for slaughtering someones sacred cow. Enough.

                      (Eric, if you feel I am crossing any lines or soiling your home, let me know and I will happily withdraw)

                    • Hi Me2,

                      I also have no issue with belief – but (like you) can’t abide factually unsupported assertions presented as absolute truth, as if they were self-evident, almost mathematical axioms.

                      The way the discussion seems to invariably transition from the reasonable and intellectually interesting – might there be a god? – to weird and even fanatic claims of absolute certainty (e.g., “Jesus is Lord”).

                      I’ve never grokked it.

                      Just as I never grokked people’s fanatic obsession with fuuuuhhhhhhhtttttttball.

                • So Moleman, if I read your post correctly, KJV is the definitive text? Right?

                  THE word of god? Right?

                  Cool. Now we have a solid reference point.

                  Exodus 19:11-13 (kill those who step in the wrong place)

                  Exodus 21:15-17 (kill adulterers, kill disrespectful kids)

                  Exodus 22:18-20 (*19 – there is no mention of carnal, just lieth)

                  Exodus 31:13-15 (work and be put to death day)

                  Exodus 35:1-3 (more work and be put to death)

                  Leviticus 20:1-3 (kill the unbelievers)

                  Leviticus 20:9-12 (kill adulterers, kill disrespectful kids)

                  So, all good with the true believers huh?

            • I would.

              Because Biblical Law is all encompassing. It demands absolute submission… and not to god. Rather, to the writings (and orders) of men who claim to be his conduits.

              If I were to buy into all this god stuff, I much prefer the pagan Teutonic conception. Give me Wotan… or better yet, Crom!

              “Fire and wind come from the sky, from the gods of the sky, but Crom is your god. Crom, and he lives in the earth. Once giants lived in the earth, Conan, and in the darkness of chaos, they fooled Crom, and they took from him the enigma of steel. Crom was angered, and the earth shook, and fire and wind struck down these giants, and they threw their bodies into the waters. But in their rage, the gods forgot the secret of steel and left it on the battlefield, and we who found it. We are just men, not gods, not giants, just men. And the secret of steel has always carried with it a mystery. You must learn its riddle, Conan, you must learn its discipline, for no one, no one in this world can you trust, not men, not women, not beasts… This you can trust. [points to his sword]”

              • Dear Eric,

                I would too.

                Remember the rebooted “Battlestar Galactica” series?

                The humans were polytheists, somewhat like Norse Paganism. Their polytheism was actually more palatable (less unpalatable) than the Cylons’ clover-ish quasi-Christian monotheism.

              • Eric, you must remember that while God’s laws are intended for all humanity to follow, God only ever authorized their administration over a select group of people. People who entered into a covenant [contract] with Him; and, those laws were to be mainly administered by the people at large [which is where our Founding Fathers got the concept of gov’t by the people- i.e. no police or military force, but the direct action of the community, under due process of judges)

                And those judges were direc tly answerable to God.

                It is when men abrogate to themselves the authority to rule other men- whether it be by God’s laws, or any other system of law, that the trouble begins.

                God is not yet ruling this earth (He will in the future) -atheists seem to realize this, when they pose such questions as: “If God is good, why does He let bad things happen?”. On the one hand, they want God to keep His hands off….yet on the other, they wonder why the causes and effect of evil is prevalent. (For the same reason that if one does not obey the laws of gravity, they will fall down).

                This also proves how libertarian God is. While we can live by His laws and reap the blessings- both individually and collectively- He does not force us to- especially not under the administration of men who claim to represent Him- be they a church or state. And even when God Himself rules this world in the future, the laws that affect the average person are very minimal- i.e. no murder; no stealing; etc. -pretty much the big NAP ones, for which most would agree that there should be consequences for their transgression.

                The majority of God’s laws do not require human punishment for their transgression- but rather, the punishment for their transgression is disfavor with God/withdrawal of blessings; or the natural bad consequences of one’s actions.

                It was the reading of the Bible, and seeing these things, that made me a libertarian- because that is precisely how God operates; and that is why our founders were essentially libertarian; and also why I find the violence of government so distasteful- because their agents are committing actual crimes when they abuse other men for the breaking of laws- be they God’s laws or the state’s, which God never authorized us to punish other men for transgressing.

                Hope this has made sense to you. I have sympathy for non-believers- because God has been so misrepresented by those claiming to worship Him, that many people just have an erroneous idea of Him.

                It is often not God with whom they have a problem- but with those claiming to represent Him. As the saying goes:”God, please save me from your followers!”. 😀

                • Hi Mole,

                  You wrote:

                  “Eric, you must remember that while God’s laws are intended for all humanity to follow, God only ever authorized their administration over a select group of people. People who entered into a covenant [contract] with Him”

                  Is this not a variation of the “implied consent” doctrine that statists use to justify all sorts of authoritarian abuse?

                  Do you mean to claim that every Israelite freely entered into a contract with god? Actually sat down with him and said, ok, I accept?

                  Or is it more accurate to say that priests claimed sovereignty over all the people under their control and that they were the righteous conduit of god’s will … and that they had better be obeyed (or else)?

                  Very serious question; no intent to insult.

                  I’d really appreciate a direct answer.

                  • Well, they could have left Israel. Which is admittedly a variant of “love it or leave it.”

                    But here’s the problem. The government of the United States was never endorsed by God. Nor the government of Canada, or Great Britain, or China, or North Korea, or whatever. The government of Israel was specifically created by God, hence its legitimacy.

                    • ” The government of Israel was specifically created by God, hence its legitimacy.”

                      And the proof of of this is….?

                      In fact, it’s just another assertion – to be accepted on faith.

                    • How’s that hope doing?

                      Let’s face it. David is as a neo-con, a fool, a liar.

                      First, conclusion.

                      Then rationalization. Fixing the ‘facts’ around the desired belief. Unfortunately the ‘facts’ are completely without basis, rote recited.

                      Completely antithetical to logical reasoning. Hopeless.

                    • @Eric- So is the NAP. The Golden Rule is not morally binding in a vacuum.

                      Now, the Bible is quite easy to prove.

                      1. 500 witnesses to Christ’s resurrection. Not just one, who could easily be lying. 500. Most of whom paid for their assertion with their lives. It wasn’t “safe” to be a Christian at this time.

                      2. Christ’s recorded word affirming the truth of the Old Testament.

                      There ya go. Very simple argument. But if one does not believe, there is little I could do to change their minds.

                      Now, just a note, I’m going to be offline for most of this week, so if I ignore anything in the next few days, its not deliberate.

                    • Oy vey!

                      If “witnesses” are probative, then surely witches exist.

                      They risked their lives? So did the early Mormons. I assume you therefore accept as “gospel” the veracity of Joseph Smith’s claims about Moroni, the Nephites and the “Golden Plates”…?

                    • But with Mormonism, it was only Joseph Smith who actually “saw” anything. Only one person. Of course, I think its possible that he was deceived by demons… not a possibility in your worldview.

                      Not to mention that Mormonism is logically impossible since it specifically claims the Bible is authoritative and yet contradicts it.

                      As for witches, I have no doubt whatsoever that they exist. That’s certainly not to say everyone who was accused of being a “witch” ever actually was one. But I believe they exist.

                    • Wrong, David.

                      A dozen people testified to having seen the golden plates. Might go read the Book of Mormon.

                      People lie. Or may be the victims of mass hysteria. In any event, the testimony of “witnesses” is dubious absent some substantive proof confirming what is alleged to have taken place. Especially the testimony of witnesses who’ve been dead for 2,000 years and who cannot be questioned and whose “accounts” have been edited and re-edited and translated and re-translated scores of times over all those years.

                      Seriously now: If I dug up an old book and in that old book, it was claimed that “500 witnesses” saw Thomas Jefferson sprout hooves and a forked tail would you feel obliged to accept that as true? If not, why?

                      As for logically impossible: How about a religion that asserts monotheism yet which clearly has a pantheon of at least two gods? (This one can’t be parsed without being extremely disingenuous; i.e., Jesus clearly addresses another person – his father. This “god the father” sent “his only begotten son.” Etc.)

                    • Dear Eric,

                      “Assuming demons exist! I haven’t met one yet myself… ”

                      I have. I’ve met plenty of them. They come around at election time asking for my vote.

                  • Eric – “I’d really appreciate a direct answer.”

                    Leviticus 20:2

                    (KJV) Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.
                    ——-

                    seems pretty clear that it is applied to all, not just the faithful.

                    Maybe Moleman can clarify.

                    • Me2, are you aware that that passage was talking about child sacrifice? I have no problem with executing people who burn their children alive for any god, false or otherwise.

                      But then, the reference was only to the people of Israel.

                    • David – “But then, the reference was only to the people of Israel.”

                      From the text – “or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel”

                      Really? Just how much interpreting of this line is required for your assertion?

                      Oh, maybe you missed this before.

                      1 Corinthians 8:2

                      Relevance? Be honest.

                    • Me2 – Leviticus 20:2 clearly states “of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel”
                      But at that time, any ‘stranger’ who sojourned in Israel had CHOSEN to do so – they consented to live by the laws of God because there were advantages to doing so, esp. as compared to living anywhere else at that time as a ‘non-citezen.’

                    • PTB

                      Please re-read the thread from above where Eric questions the legitimacy of the government of Israel.

                      More ‘god-said’. If this is the basis of legitimacy, there is no common ground for discussion. The first premise is not even agreed upon.

                      We may as well ague about how many angels……

                      Either way, 1 Corinthians 8:2
                      Are you sure? Really sure?

            • CloverYes David in the biblical law days they in no way said it is OK to do bad as long as you do not get caught like libertarians believe. Yes in those days they may not have locked you up but they would have done far worse. In those days if you were a bad person you would have been banished from the society or even killed. David I do not have a problem with that. Go for it. That sounds nothing like what you say libertarianism is. Libertarianism says do whatever the hell you feel like and don’t touch me. You can be the worst person alive but according to librarians you are an angel up until the very second you kill someone.

              • Clover lies… again:

                ” it is OK to do bad as long as you do not get caught like libertarians believe.”

                Italics added.

                What is wrong with you, asshole?

                Why must you lie? Wait. Don’t bother answering. It’s because you know, you filthy animal, that you can’t win an honest debate on the merits.

                Therefore, you twist what we defend: Absent harm caused, there is no legitimate basis for punishing someone by deliberately mischaracterizing it as “as long as you do not get caught like libertarians believe.”

                Libertarians believe no such thing. As you know. Because I have carefully explained it to you dozens of times.

                You’re a piece of shit. It take a lot for me to become this uncivil – and I despise you for it.

                • ROTFL! I’m STILL laughing from that one- “Libertarians say it’s O-K to do wrong as long as you don’t get caught”!!! Stop! You’re killing me, Clover!

                  Where does he get this stuff?

                  O-K Clover, what libertarian has EVER said that? I guess you can not comprhend the simple basic principle of libertarianism, that it’s O-K to do your thing, as long as you don’t harm others……

                  • Hi Mole,

                    In all seriousness – and without any intent to make fun of him – Clover is dull. Unintelligent. Attempting to have a logical discussion with him is not unlike trying to have a discussion with a five-year-old.

                    Not that we’re on Stephen Hawking’s level, of course. But we could have a conversation with him. Clover, on the other hand…

                    He literally does not understand… because he cannot understand.

                    Rand described such people thusly: anti-conceptual mentalities. I’d go further: non-conceptual mentalities. Such a person has an animal-like consciousness. Meaning, the kind of abstract thought we take for granted is something unknown to him. He operates on the level of particulars. So – for instance – he is extremely fearful of “dangerous drunks.” Yet he is clearly unable to define exactly what this means. And more importantly, to separate out what it does not mean.

                    Does it not remind you of a labrador retriever barking at its image on a sliding glass door?

                    Even more disturbing – to people like us, who deal in concepts – is Clover’s animal-esque incapacity to extrapolate. Lord knows, I’ve tried. To “walk him through” the logical sequence of it: If it’s acceptable to randomly stop, interrogate and search people for this reason then – logically – there is no basis for objecting to randomly stopping, interrogating and searching people for that reason.

                    Clover’s brain cannot grok that.

                    The frightening thing is that he probably represents the high average. There are millions of others out there who are even farther to the left of the Bell Curve’s center.

                    It keeps me up nights.

              • clover… seriously… do you have a brain? Do you have a clue?

                First of all, killing is not the only form of aggression. Second of all, there are numerous laws that you love that were never endorsed, or even implied to be endorsed, at any point in the Bible.

              • clover, yep, you gotta watch those “librarians”. No telling what they’ll do….shush you or actually come whisper in your ear.

            • I have to agree with the Apostle James, David, who refers to God’s law as “The Law of Liberty”. It only punishes actual crimes; No jails; no cops; It provides for the protection of life and property; It doesn’t impose penalties for technicalities…. It’s about as opposite as possible from Cloverism/secular law.

              I also find it interesting that God doesn’t command His worshippers to take it upon themselves to inflict His law on the world- unlike the Moslems- but rather, until such time as God Himself will administer that law on a worldwide basis, participation is by voluntaryt consent by those who believe, because that law is written in their hearts and minds by The Spirit.

          • “The bad guys that I defend”? No, Mr. Idiot, I don’t defend bad guys; I defend the innocent; unlike YOU who defends the destruction of 100 innocent people, just in the hopes that they may possibly nab one bad guy.

            Thousands of years ago, or just 100 years ago in this country, yes….that is the way it worked- instead of a gang of professional goons who were paid by protection money extorted from those whom they are supposed to “protect”, the bad guys were caught by the community. You somehow think that having armed goons who make their living doing this; who are not accountable; and who are usually not a part of the communities they police (and are noit loyal to that community; but rather are loyal to those who provide their livelihood) are somehow a better solution?

            Funny, but when the actual community members were doing it, we didn’t have SWAT teams raidi9ng innocent people’s homes; nor did we have rampant crime; nor innocent people living in fear that they might have to confront armed goons if a light bulb burns out on their car while they are driving down the road.

            It was called “government by the people; for the people”. Of course, to people such as yourself, all that connotes is the ability to cast a vote every few years to choose who gets to rule over you.

    • Dreary? Yesterday was pretty nice here although it is raining this morn but rain in west Tx. is always a good thing. I don’t own a single cotton plant so it doesn’t bother me at all. And it doesn’t matter since a cotton farmer if guaranteed a better living than almost anyone….no way to go broke subsidy farming. Farmers are mighty laid back these days.

      Here’s how you stay on top Chris. When it’s cold and dreary or simply dreary, think of these words and things will get better.

      My window faces the south. I’m almost half way to heaven
      The snow is fallin but all I can see are those fields of cotton smiling back at me.

      My window faces the south and though I’m so far from that Swanee
      I’m never frownin or down in the mouth, my window faces the south, my window faces the south. YeeeeeeeeeHawwwwwwww!!!!

      You’ll feel better in a bit.

      • yep, c_dub250,
        good guy… gooood guyyyy. 0:40

        Hopefully, soon, we won’t need “great men” and longer. Especially since the bulk of them historically have in reality been horrible scumbags, and not great men at all.

        Great Men Theory
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Man_theory

        The Great Man theory is an idea from the 1800s in which history is said to be largely explained by the impact of “great men”, or heroes… highly influential individuals who, due to either their personal charisma, intelligence, wisdom, or political skill utilized their power in a way that had a decisive historical impact.

        Nietzshche imagined a new class of Übermensch
        The Übermensch is a concept in the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. In his 1883 novel Thus Spoke Zarathustra Nietzsche has his protagonist posit the Übermensch as a goal for humanity to set for itself.

        The German prefix über can have connotations of superiority, transcendence, excessiveness, or intensity, depending on the words to which it is prepended. Mensch refers to a member of the human species, rather than to a male specifically. The adjective übermenschlich means super-human, in the sense of beyond human strength or out of proportion to humanity.

        This-worldliness
        Nietzsche introduces the concept of the Übermensch in contrast to the other-worldliness of Christianity. Zarathustra proclaims the Übermensch to be the meaning of the earth and admonishes his audience to ignore those who promise other-worldly hopes in order to draw them away from the earth.

        The turn away from the earth is prompted, he says, by a dissatisfaction with life, a dissatisfaction that causes one to create another world in which those who made one unhappy in this life are tormented. The Übermensch is not driven into other worlds away from this one.

        Zarathustra declares that the Christian escape from this world requires the invention of an eternal soul which would be separate from the body and survive the body’s death.

        Part of this other-worldliness, then, was the abnegation and mortification of the body, or asceticism. Zarathustra further links the Übermensch to the body and to interpreting the soul as simply an aspect of the body.

        Metaphysics in philosophy and Platonism in general are manifestations of other-worldliness escapism. A superstition in a greater Truth and Essence are Inventions by means of which the common man seeks escape from this world. The Übermensch, in contrast is free from these failings.

        Zarathustra presents the Übermensch as the creator of new values. In this way, it appears as a solution to the problem of the death of God and ensuing nihilism. If the Übermensch acts to create new values within the moral vacuum of nihilism, there is nothing that this creative act would not justify.

        In order to avoid a relapse into Platonic idealism or and self-hating asceticism, the creation of these new values must not be motivated by the same instincts that gave birth to those old values.

        Instead, our new voluntarily chosen values must be motivated by a love of this world and of this life. The old Christian value system became a reaction against life and hence destructive in a sense.

        By contrast, the new values which the Übermensch will be responsible for will be life-affirming and creative.

        John Galt and the men are strike are a society of just such Übermensch.

        All human life will now be given meaning by how it advances a new generation of excellent human beings. The aspiration of some women will be to give birth and nurture such Übermensch, for example; her relationships with men would henceforth be judged by this standard.

        The Übermensch stands in contrast with the last man of egalitarian modernity, an alternative goal which humanity might set for itself. The last man appears only if no Übermensch arise, and mankind instead confines himself to another long dark age.

        The Übermensch and the anarchists
        The thought of Nietzsche had an important influence in anarchist authors. These authors wrote that “There were many things that drew anarchists to Nietzsche: his hatred of the state; his disgust for the mindless social behavior of ‘herds’; his anti-Christianity; his distrust of the effect of both the market and the State on cultural production; his desire for an ‘overman’ — that is, for a new human who was to be neither master nor slave; his praise of the ecstatic and creative self, with the artist as his prototype, who could say, ‘Yes’ to the self-creation of a new world on the basis of nothing; and his forwarding of the ‘transvaluation of values’ as source of change, as opposed to a Marxist conception of class struggle and the dialectic of a linear history.”

        American anarchist Emma Goldman passionately defends both Nietzsche and Max Stirner from attacks within anarchism saying “The most disheartening tendency common among readers is to tear out one sentence from a work, as a criterion of the writer’s ideas or personality. Friedrich Nietzsche, for instance, is decried as a hater of the weak because he believed in the Übermensch.

        It does not occur to the shallow interpreters of that giant mind that this vision of the Übermensch also called for a state of society which will not give birth to a race of weaklings and slaves.”

        The Spanish anarchists also mixed their class politics with Nietzschean inspiration. Murray Bookchin, in The Spanish Anarchists, describes Nietzschean individualism of the superhombre to whom ‘all is permitted’.”

        Bookchin describes the reconstruction of society by the workers as a Nietzschean project. Bookchin says that “workers must see themselves as human beings, not as class beings; as creative personalities, not as ‘proletarians,’ but as self-affirming individuals, not as ‘masses’.

        The economic component must be humanized precisely by bringing an ‘affinity of friendship’ to the work process, by diminishing the role of onerous work in the lives of producers, indeed by a total ‘transvaluation of values’ as it applies to production and consumption as well as social and personal life.”

        – that’s a lot about Nietzsche, maybe its worth the slog, maybe not. Once the myth of the state is no longer sacredly obeyed, who knows what will be possible, and what kind of unchained greatness will begin to emerge.

        • “Once the myth of the state is no longer sacredly obeyed, who knows what will be possible, and what kind of unchained greatness will begin to emerge.”

          Spot on! That’s the point I keep trying to get across to people (friends/family/etc….you all get it already).

      • Hi David,

        At the moment, I practice avoidance. For the same reason I try to avoid potholes in the road when I am out driving. But I certainly do not hide my opinions. Everyone knows who I am – including my neighbors. I use my real name – my full name (unlike Mike from Wichita and, of course, Clover). I don’t hide behind anything. My byline appears above this and all my columns. If someone has a problem with what I’ve written or said, they can bring it up to me directly. I would certainly not shy from discussing this column with my neighbor.

        That said, I do not seek his friendship – though we have a common interest in bikes and probably other things, too. I would openly tell him why, if he were to ask me.

        • @Eric- Cool.

          My personal mentality.

          If a cop doesn’t profess to be Christian (I know this doesn’t matter to you, but it does to me for scriptural reasons) I have absolutely no moral qualms about befriending them. The Bible is clear on this, we’re supposed to be willing to associate with people of the world and share the gospel with them no matter how bad they are. Now, this does not mean that justice doesn’t have a place, nor does it mean that I would hide my opinions. But if they’re not Christians, I definitely don’t expect them to live up to Biblical morals. I’d like it if they would not aggress against other people (thus, I’d have no issues with encouraging them to quit, were I to have a good opportunity and enough influence with the person for it to matter.) But if they’re of the world, I’m called to love them, befriend them, and share the gospel with them. That doesn’t just go for cops, it goes for prostitutes, thieves, whoever. Jesus was condemned by the Pharisees for eating with tax collectors and prostitutes. Jesus did NOT disagree with the Pharisees that these types of people were sinful, rather, he recognized that he came to help people who knew they were sick, not self-righteous people who thought they were good enough.

          Christian cops are trickier per 1 Corinthians 5. I am not sure how to deal with this, and this is one of my favorite topics to discuss with Christian libertarians (I’m willing to discuss it here as well, though I’m not sure it would be as useful). It seems clear to me that most cops are A: Unrepentently engaging in sin through their careers and B: Have no idea that this is the case. You’re also supposed to have the entire (local) church confront someone before you stop associating with them, and at present I doubt there are ANY local churches that would publicly call cops to task for the extortion they do “on the job.” So, I’m sort of a lone wolf in this. I’m not the ONLY wolf in this (actually, I was listening to free talk live recently and one caller who identified as Christian, and enough so to sort of preach at the other people there, actually went so far as to advocate shooting at cops.) but I’m definitely one of the few who takes this type of position, and I have yet to publicly share all of my thoughts on it except here and on RPF. This is something I really want to discuss with C Jay Engel at some point, come to think of it. All I know is that there needs to be a dramatic social change in the church before I can really get anywhere with this sort of thing.

          • CloverI have some questions David. You say that cops are sinners for doing their job? Say what? Are they sinners for stopping to help a stranded motorist? Are they sinners for stopping to help change a tire? Are they sinners for taking a dangerous drunk driver off the road to save the lives of others? Are they sinners when they go and try to break up a domestic disturbance? Tell me David what causes a cop to be a sinner by doing their job?

            • Posting this not really for the benefit of clover (who I think is a paid government troll) but rather for the benefit of anyone who hasn’t ever considered this whole libertarian idea from a Christian perspective yet.

              It is a clear point in Christian doctrine that certain things, such as idolatry, sexual immorality, covetousness, theft, murder, man-stealing (kidnapping), lying, blasphemy, and other things are moral wrongs and contrary to God’s law.

              Now, I am not saying that all of these things are of equal seriousness or that all should be criminalized. But I am saying that all of those things are immoral.

              It is also part of Christian doctrine that all men, whoever they are, are bound by the moral law of God.

              Politicians try to use the force of government to sanction what God forbids. To be clear about what I’m saying, they are not merely “permitting” what God forbids (that is sometimes Biblical, even under the OT theocracy there were NUMEROUS sins that were never criminalized). They are actually SANCTIONING what God forbids. They are commanding certain people in particular to ignore the Biblical command not to steal and kidnap.

              We call these people “police officers.”

              Is every single action they commit illegitimate? No. but they engage in theft on a daily basis, by enforcing tax law (stealing from all the populace) and also through running revenue scams through selective traffic law enforcement (stealing from some of the populace.) Taxes and fines are not requests, they are armed threats. Dare to thumb your nose at the government, these people are the enforcement mechanism. There is nothing inherently immoral about not wanting to give your money to “the government” or about the flow of traffic going faster or slower than some arbitrary number some bureacurat posted on a sign. Or of deciding to take the additional risk that comes with not wearing a seatbelt or motorcycle helmet. When cops “enforce the law” on these points, they are actually robbing us at gunpoint, even if they don’t realize it.

              They also kidnap people when they declare certain substances arbitrarily “illegal” and threaten to drag people off in handcuffs for possession of those substances. Enforcement of random, arbitrary codes and random laws would also qualify.

              It is recognized by most Christians, and most people, that you have a right to use lethal violence if necessary to defend your life from an aggressor. In the heat of the moment, you have to take action yourself. If its no longer the heat of the moment, say someone steals from you and gets away, you typically won’t try to defend your property yourself. You will rely on someone else, some form of “government” (though not necessarily a State) to bring the criminal to due process, enforce restitution, whatever. This is reasonable. It is an extension of the individual right to self-defense, not a new right created out of thin air.

              By contrast, the power to “tax”, or to ban drugs, or to ban guns, or to enforce traffic regulations, or whatever are all artificially made rules, which give artifical “rights” to government. I suspect you would never personally pull out a gun and shoot at someone, or threaten to do so were they not to pay you a “fine”, if they did one of those things, even though you support the government banning them. Its an inconsistency and it does NOT in ANY WAY extend from your individual right to self-defense.

              The Bible says to do unto others what you would have them do unto you. Police officers cannot do this because they necessarily threaten violence against other people on a daily basis all the while lying and claiming “its for their safety” and so forth. They make their livings through force, and it is despicable.

              Again, is every action a cop takes wrong? No. And above you mentioned some actions that would be good WHOEVER did them. But there are many actions that would be bad WHOEVER did them that cops are REQUIRED to do at present, by the nature of the career.

            • I just want to make a correction to my original post. I said “clover listed above good things that officers do.” I missed the “taking drunk drivers off the road” part, which is often NOT a good thing. If you are driving recklessly, it doesn’t matter WHY you were driving recklessly. Otherwise, its not even something the cop should know about. And then, of course, there’s the fact that cops have arrested people for “drunk driving” because they were sleeping in the driver’s seat while drunk and “they were obviously driving”. (Little do the useless idiots know, they are actually encouraging drunk driving by doing that, as being semi-irresponsible by pulling over and sleeping after making the mistake of driving drunk is likely to get you in more trouble than driving drunk and sticking with driving drunk.

              • CloverDavid is it not a sin to endanger others? Is a drunk driver not a sinner then? If a sinner will not stop his sinning ways is it not the hand of God through the use of police to get the sinner off the road so he will not endanger his people? David it really does you no good to quote the bible because you make up your own laws and non-aggressions. Tell us David if a cop is not a traffic cop is he an OK person since he does not kidnap someone who endangers others? Tell us David what your job is? Do you steal from others?

                • I would assert (because the Bible asserts it) that drunkenness, whether one drives or not, is a sin. Nonetheless, God never criminalized it at any point in the Bible.

                  I am not saying that reckless driving is OK. I am saying that the amount of alcohol in your bloodstream, while it may make you more likely to drive recklessly, is not something that should be criminal in and of itself.

                  I am very skeptical of the idea that there could be any cop that does not at least unknowingly engage in either theft or kidnapping. It isn’t just about traffic cops. In fact (apologies to Eric since I know he’s into cars and stuff), traffic regulations are not nearly the biggest issue. There would probably be some traffic regulations on free market roads. Less, to be sure, but still probably some (free market roads, however, could never get away with a system that actively tries to make all of its drivers into lawbreakers.) Far bigger problems are the massive incarceration rate that comes with the fact that roughly 49% of people who are arrested haven’t actually committed crimes with identifiable victims (i’ve seen numbers that are higher than 49% as well. 49% is the lowest mark I’ve seen, hence why I am using it.)

                  • CloverDavid if a person by some research shows that they are 7 times more likely to cause an accident at .05 BAC then why would you kiss someone’s ass for only drinking 50 percent more than that? David if drinking 4 drinks does nothing to alter you then why would people do it? David I do not pull made up statements out of my ass like you do. I have facts that back me up. Facts show that 10s of thousands of people are killed and injured by drunk driving. Would your God say that is good? If not, why would you?

                    • Clover,

                      Who here has advocated “kissing someone’s ass?”

                      Another example of your lies.

                      On the other hand, I have criticized this business of treating people as presumptively “drunk” and subjecting them to random and arbitrary and forcible police investigations. But you won’t engage on that level because you know it’s an argument you can’t win on the merits.

                      Just as you know that “drunk” is a subjective – and very politicized – term. And that BAC thresholds defining “drunk” driving have become ludicrous. That a person can be charged and convicted of this offense even if no evidence that his actual driving was indicative of an impaired condition can be produced.

                    • Eric I can not help your stupidity. You have no common sense. Eric it is proven that people with a .02 BAC negatively affects people’s driving. At .05 BAC your chances of creating an accident while driving is huge compared to someone who has not been drinking. The USA is at .08 just for people like you that say there may be false positives or whatever and because you say that 2 or 3 drinks does nothing even though you said you never drink to know anything personally. Eric you are like the person that says the world is still flat. There are thousands of things disproving your statements but you said it is so with nothing to back it up.Clover
                      Eric I am talking to you here just like police may talk to you on the public roadway except with writing rather than speaking. Am I accusing you of drunk driving? If a very small percent of people that police talk to are actually drunks then tell me how they can accuse you of drunk driving?
                      Eric do you think that drunks should kill thousands on our roadways? If not then what is your solution to cure the problem? The solution that many cities are using does help a lot but you say to keep on killing more? Why? You have no solution.
                      Eric is this just like all other libertarian ideas? Your solutions to roads without taxes is that it will just happen. Say what? Is that the same solution you have for decreasing dangerous drunk driving? It will just happen? Eric if you are unwilling to do anything to stop a dangerous activity that hurts and kills others then you are in effect kissing their ass.

                    • Clover,

                      Give me an objective definition of “common sense.” One that isn’t an opinion.

                      Can you do that? No.

                      “People” are negatively affected at .02 BAC? Which people, Clover? What if I am not “negatively affected,” Clover? What if I’m a better driver at .08 BAC than you are at .00 BAC?

                      Clover writes (that is, lies):

                      “Eric I am talking to you here just like police may talk to you on the public roadway .”

                      Except I am free to tell you to fuck off or simply ignore you – and if you were to put your paws on me I’d have every legal right to punch you in the got-damned mouth and knock your got-damned teeth out. “Tell me,” Clover, am I able to tell a cop to fuck off or ignore him? And if he puts his hands on me… or points his gun at me…?

                      Yes, Clover, I “think that drunks should kill thousands on our roadways.”

                      Just like I think murderers and rapists should be allowed to run free.

                      Christ!

                    • CloverYes Eric when you say that there should be thousands killed on our roadways by drunks then yes delaying such a thing according to you would be bad. Sobriety checks is a bad thing to you because you want fewer people on our roadways.
                      Eric I challenge you to have 4 drinks and go take some of your so called driving tests. Common sense would say you would have some kind of tests done before you say you are so good of a driver at .08 BAC, Eric do you still think the world is flat?

                    • Clover,

                      Child abuse could be more quickly identified by having cops conduct random, dragnet-style searches of people’s homes. If you don’t support that, does it mean you favor “thousands and thousands” of kids being abused?

                      In re driving skill:

                      My buddy Jeff can bench press 350 pounds. Even if he’s down with the flu, hasn’t slept in 48 hours and not eaten all day, it’s pretty likely he can still bench more than I can when in perfect health, well-fed and rested.

                      Your noodle apparently cannot grok the fact that people vary … in countless ways. Some are much stronger than others; some much better drivers than others. Some process alcohol differently.

                      But what you demand is a one-size-fits-all standard that completely ignores the one truly relevant criteria: Was the person’s driving indicative of impairment? Even if it’s not – even if the person’s driving cannot be faulted – you still demand the person be punished. Which is despicable.

                      Even more despicable is your demand that people be treated as presumptively drunk and forced to submit to a criminal investigation.

                    • Eric go do your VIR whatever that is after a few drinks. Does VIR duplicate real world driving situations like driving 500 miles in varying road conditions and various kinds of traffic after drinking a few drinks? I really doubt it. If it does then I want to see you do it.Clover

                    • Clover,

                      Are you going to answer my question?

                      Child abuse could be more quickly identified by having cops conduct random, dragnet-style searches of people’s homes. If you don’t support that, does it mean you favor “thousands and thousands” of kids being abused?

                      Well?

                    • Eric your comparison of a weight lifter’s ability to lift weights and that of a car driver after drinking a few shows us that you have zero common sense. The main thing needed for weight lifting is strength and some balance. None of these qualities are what a car driver needs. No one ever said that strength is severely affected by a few drinks but the things that drivers need to use is. Like I said Eric, if I was a stupid as you are I would make a living at writing garbage.Clover

                    • “Common sense” is not the issue here, Clover. (And I’m still waiting for you to define it; which of course you can’t because the term is incoherent – just like you!)

                      The fact is that people vary in their abilities; for instance, some are much better drivers than others. Take a marginal driver – not much skill, poor vision, slow reflexes – and give him three beers and you’ve got a problem. Actually, you already had a problem.

                      But take an excellent driver, someone with a high level of skill and superior reflexes, etc. – and give him three beers and he’s still a better driver than your sober but marginal driver above.

                      What you demand, Clover, is a one-size-fits-all definition of “drunk” that takes no account whatsoever of individual variables, nor the individual’s actual driving.

                      It is exactly like “saying” (as you style it) that no one should be allowed to ski on a slope more challenging than the Bunny Hop because you can’t handle the Bunny hop.

                    • Hey Clover, just think how much faster John Wayne Gacy would have been caught with view screens in every room of every home. That could be done soon if not now. Broadband connection, cloud computing, cheap storage, it’s pretty much there. Think of all the lives that would be saved. Those kidnapping victims being chained in basements… thing of the past. Viewscreens Clover. Your protectors can watch us all 24/7. You’ll sign up to be the first to have them installed in your home right Clover? It’s for the children. You can’t be too safe. Sounds good doesn’t it?

          • “Christian cops are trickier per 1 Corinthians 5. I am not sure how to deal with this, and this is one of my favorite topics to discuss with Christian libertarians (I’m willing to discuss it here as well, though I’m not sure it would be as useful).”

            Um. What does 1 Corinthians 5 have to do with this? From which version of the BIble?

            • 9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church[a] whom you are to judge? 13 God judges[b] those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

              I’d say cops are at least unknowingly guilty of some of those things (swindling and greed certainly, probably idolatry to since their “on the job” moral code is determined by the State.)

              I am really not interested in doing this back and forth with atheists about whether we should believe the Bible or not, at least right now. I’m far more interested in how to deal with this issue from a Christian libertarian POV.

            • Today’s Psalm is 137:9

              O daughter of Babylon, you devastated one, How blessed will be the one who repays you With the recompense with which you have repaid us. How blessed will be the one who seizes your babies and smashes them against the rock.

              -If you’re going to adhere to the NAP, don’t you have to hate who ever gives their blessing to smashing babies against rocks in addition to hating the state?

        • CloverEric -of course you use your own name here- This is your business though probably a business so small that your cop buddy is unaware of it. You make a snide comment because clover & I like everyone else here don’t use real names. In fact it appears that clover HAS given his real info soooooo that would make you a Liar????? BTW, nothing good ever comes of real names on the net.

            • Hey, Eric, NOT putting their real names on the interwebz is probably the only sane decisions Clover and his ilk have ever made in their lives! 🙂

              Seriously- it’s a good idea to never put ones real name on their computer- much less publish it on the web. Why make it easy for demented people to stalk or cause trouble for you?

              With a common name, it makes it a little less critical- as then they can’t do much without other identifying info- but if you have a less common or unique name……

              Funny though- these statists who are always willing to sacrifice the privacy of others, are only too happy to maintain their own, where it counts!

              • Hi Mole,

                Clover’s not disclosing his name is much less irritating than his refusal to ever back up anything he says with more than just his emoting and opinions. A guy (gal?) who probably doesn’t know how to change a car’s oil lecturing people who know how to rebuild cars; a non-engineer lecturing engineers about vehicle design; a person who clearly knows very little about vehicle dynamics/handling/car control pontificating about “safe” driving.

                As for me – I’ve arrived at a point of Zen equanimity about the whole thing. Let ’em come. I’ve decided to be open about my beliefs, come what may. Maybe I’m just getting old. But the bottom line is I’m tired of authoritarians and collectivism – and no longer care who knows it.

                F ’em and feed ’em fish heads!

                • eric, your closing line, I just used that…..but probably after you had. Not a competition, just sayin.

                  Tor, when you speak of torture I think of my parent’s generation and how those people, even their politicians couldn’t/wouldn’t tolerate that. I suspect the things the Japanese did in the S Pacific had lasting effects on the people of this country. oooo Sorry, that previous line, oooo, was done by Kitty Wyne who had to chime in. Unfortunately, my generation, well-fed, well-kempt(for the most part)had no personal reasons to oppose torture so we get people like Rush and Georgy Bush and Wolfowitz and that whole crew who can easily think of ‘everyone else’ in the world as somehow not as human as “Murikans”. They have good reason in their minds too even if they won’t admit it boils down to money and power, money given them by TPTB and power they take because of a flawed political system where talking heads on tv dominate the thinking of an entire nation. Excuse me, I think I need to puke.

                • Eric said: I’ve arrived at a point of Zen equanimity about the whole thing. Let ’em come. I’ve decided to be open about my beliefs, come what may. Maybe I’m just getting old. But the bottom line is I’m tired of authoritarians and collectivism – and no longer care who knows it.

                  Oh, I agree! “They” could easily find out who and where you are, anyway. But it’s the various nuts out there who could pose a real problem- whether it be Clover or some other unbalanced loon.

                  I’ll tell you, I had this nut-case woman on a forum a few years ago take offense because I was not interested in her (You know what they say about a woman scorned!)- and she must have spent HUNDREDS of hours scouring the internet for posts of mine- anything she could connect to several different user-names- going back a decade- and she caused me a LOT of trouble, and libeled me all over the place, and even tried to make trouble for me locally- for nearly 2 years- and this, not even knowing my real name or address.

                  It’s something that you don’t think is a big deal, until it happens to you. But believe me, just one demented person with a lot of time on their hands can do a lot of damage, in ways you and I wouldn’t imagine, until we see it.

                  I would use a pseudonym and a private PO box if i were in your position- and maybe even use several different names, so that if one is ever trashed badly, you could always just abandon it, rather than spending countless hours trying rectify things (Like imagine if a nemesis were to post terrible, libelous things in your name….. Not only can they ruin your name and reputation, but they can get you in actual legal trouble if they know your real name and location.

                  I had never given much thought to the subject until it happened to me- but after it did, I was SO glad that I never put my real name on my computer or on the internet!

                  And the fact that people like us hold unpopular non-mainstream views, makes us even more likely targets.

                  Heh, I had exposed the identity of a poster on a local forum who was a cop, and who used to post things which made it clear that he was a psycho [aren’t they all?] and held a very contemptuous opinion of civilians. Imagine if my nut-job stalker had been able to expose my identity and location?

                  • (Funny thing about that cop: He was so stupid. I only had a hunch who he was- but used his own stupidity to trick him into confirming his identity!)

    • because golden rule. because NAP. because this is a stock statist troll question we’ve seen a thousands times.

      why place demands on the victim? What happened to confronting the aggressor?

      same old tired bigotry. if you slaves hate it here so much, why don’t you go back to Africa. if you don’t agree with your master that you are his property, why don’t you have the courage to take it up with him directly. why are you appealing to third parties and outsiders regarding your plight.

      • Hmmm….. I haven’t been able to keep up with this thread, as there have been so many responses- looks like I’m missing out on something…..

        • Hey Moleman,
          What I wrote above was in response to David saying:

          “Eric, I know the person who asked this was a troll, but I’m honestly curious what you think about his question.”

          The troll was MikeFromWichita. That was my sarcastic response to the troll’s questions.

          • Oh, I know, Tor- I was just injecting a comment there. I still have to catch-up on about half the posts on this thread! I’ve just been looking at in bits and pieces when I have time. I love these epic discussions……I just can’t spend hours at a time looking at them, unless maybe it snows or something.

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  37. A is A: A Thing is Itself
    L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise

    I spent three hours yesterday playing Solitaire on my computer and listening to Rush Limbaugh on the radio, trying to justify the use of torture by the government in its war against … against what? We’ll go easy on the state and say its a war against those who want to blow people and things up. Like the government, we won’t ask—for the moment—why they might want to do that, and what makes them feel justified.

    My wife and daughter can’t stand the blustering, pompous, formerly fat flumpus, and don’t really understand why I listen to him. It is by no means because I agree with what he says. Nor because I have somehow become hypnotized by his rhetorical brilliance, I have two reasons: first, because he is a conservative, his interests and mine as a libertarian, sometimes run parallel (we share an enemy: RINOs like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner) and it’s especially important to recognize when they do not; and second, what he has to say often becomes fodder for essays, articles, and columns exactly like this one.

    Torture can be generally defined as deliberately hurting someone under your control, of making them think that you’re about to kill them, of subjecting them to extreme discomfort, of depriving them of food, water, warmth, or sleep, of taking away their dignity and honor. That last technique doesn’t really count as torture to most Americans, because, after more than a century of public schooling, government propaganda, and media manipulation, the concept of honor is beyond them.

    Limbaugh’s rationalizations for torture boiled down to three assertions, I think, each one more absurd than the other two: first, that what the government does to its helpless captives isn’t really torture; second, that even if it is torture, what they have done to us is even worse; and third, that it yields information that can save lives.

    The first of Limbaugh’s pathetic assertions can be dealt with by experiment: let the so-called Doctor of Democracy submit to something easy, say, waterboarding—pouring water over his cloth covered face until he’s afraid he’ll drown—or just keep him up all night for three days in a row. The fact that he hasn’t volunteered for this kind of treatment, and yet feels perfectly entitled to make pronouncements about it, is solid proof that he knows it’s torture and won’t admit it.

    I can sympathize, to a degree, with Limbaugh’s second assertion. I have never swallowed the pacifist/Christian proposition that revenge is always and automatically wrong. Revenge, in fact, has Darwinistic survival value: if a potential enemy knows for sure that you’re going to give back as good as you’ll get, they’ll likely leave you the hell alone.

    Former Colorado congressman Tom Tancredo (a conservative with whom I frequently disagree) would say that the proper response to the fall of the Twin Towers (if we choose to believe the government’s story about that day, which I do not) would have been to drop a small atomic bomb on Mecca and, with certain ethical caveats, I agree. It certainly wasn’t to invade two other countries that had absolutely nothing to do with 9/11. Tell me, precisely what does an enemy learn when he smacks you a good one, and you inerringly sock the fellow standing next to you?

    There is also another argument against torture, one that recently seems as futile as scratching glass with chalk: we are the good guys. We are civilized. Civilized good guys don’t torture people no matter the provocation. Both my uncle and my grandmother supervised groups of German and Italian prisoners-of-war during World War II. Both groups said their leaders had told them the Americans would torture them if they were captured, and admitted enormous surprise that this didn’t happen.

    “Americans don’t torture people,” My uncle and grandmother explained, something that, sadly, couldn’t truthfully be said of us today.

    My uncle watched German POWs doing agricultural work in Weld and Larimer Counties, Colorado. It was work to which the mostly peasant levies were long accustomed. He wouldn’t carry the shotgun he was offered, but just cut himself a heavy switch—and let the workers know that his brother, my future dad, was a prisoner-of-war in Germany. He never had an escape attempt. Many of the Italians loading and unloading freight trains in Ogden, Utah under my grandmother’s charge, wept openly, when told the war was over and they had to go home.

    The third excuse is pure, epistemological silliness: that you can obtain useful information by systematically mistreating people. They may hold out for a while, but eventually they’ll break down and tell you exactly what they think you want to hear. I know that I certainly would. And our many “successes” in Aghanistan illustrate that pretty well. The government, to my knowledge, has never offered an example of torture saving the day—and there are so many unanswered questions about the killing of Osama bin Laden, it is too contaminated for such use.

    I was brought up by my mother and father believing that only the bad guys torture people. The Spanish Inquisition, Italian fascisti, the Nazi German Gestapo, Darth Vader threatening Princess Leia with a floating torture machine. And guess what, Rush. My mom and dad were right.

    We’re the bad guys.
    – –
    The Lucifer Effect – Understanding How Americans Became Evil