Friday, December 05, 2014

A Must Read

This is an incredibly comprehensive summary of the Biblical teaching on marriage for all Christians who might be tempted to believe there are Biblical justifications for supporting alternative definitions.  How nice it would be if such people could provide Scriptural references to support their position as Stan has done here.  Don't hold your breath.  Well done, Stan.

Friday, November 07, 2014

We've Won! Now What?

Not really a huge surprise, as it is not uncommon that the opposition party picks up seats in the midterm election of a president's second term in office.  Nonetheless, it is great news to know that both idiots, Reid and Pelosi, are not sitting in the big chairs.  But what happens now? 

Hopefully, we'll see some real changes of meaning and worth.  At the least, compromises that push a more sound agenda forward.  The Weekly Standard has a good article entitled, "A Constitutional Congress?  How the legislative branch can resume its rightful role."  It outlines a five-step plan for this goal:

1.  Relieve the recently relinquished borrowing, taxing and spending authorities
2.  Re-institute the spending power
3.  Regulate the regulators
4.  Censure unconstitutional executive acts
5.  Acknowledge executive strengths

In short, do your job and don't give up authority to the other branches.  There's three for a reason and returning each to its own duties re-establishes the proper checks and balance dynamics our government is supposed to have.

I'd like to see the new Senate majority leader dispense with the blocking of proposals and let the body debate the issues like it should.  I'd like to see the Speaker of the House insist that all bills be studied and debated before passage.  No more of this "we'll have to pass the bill to see what's in it" crap. 

I'd also like to see the rejection of the notion that social issues are of less concern than any other.  They are not and are inextricably linked. 

I'd really like to see the notion of "Comprehensive 'whatever' reform" rejected once and for all and the particulars of a general issue resolved one at a time.  Like immigration, for example.  Sealing the borders is a separate issue from the matter of how and how many enter the country.  And of course, look at that massive and massively idiotic Obamacare bill.  Thousands of pages its supporters still have not read.  It entails many separate issues that would have been better resolved if each had separate focus.  For example, allowing the purchase of insurance across state lines would have gone a long way toward decreasing costs to the consumer due to increased competition and this did not require an huge "comprehensive" bill to make a tangible impact.

In general, I most definitely want to see the Republican majority act like conservatives they insist they are, but in doing so, make the case in a way that more people understand the clear benefits of supporting more conservative agendas.  This is the best way to maintain control of both Houses.  I believe that this great victory is not a mandate for conservative philosophy as much as a rejection of the current administration.  Again, this is a common thing this deep into a two-term president's time in office.  We can't just be Democrat lite, but must act like conservatives until the positive effects that conservative policies will indeed bring are clearly felt by the nation.  Let's all be vigilant in holding the new majority party accountable.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Ask Me Anything

Based on recent discussions at other blogs, I am offering the opportunity for anyone to pick a topic on which they'd like to focus for the purpose of determining why I believe as I do.  In responding, I will not ask any question of my own toward the questioner intending to determine his position, but only to have a question clarified in order to more clearly articulate my position.  Here are some qualifications:

1.  Should anyone take up the challenge, I reserve the right to pick from amongst multiple topics, which topic I will address. 

2.  If there appears to be multiple "votes" for any particular topic, I might use that as the determining factor, while still reserving the right to choose. 

3.  I reserve the right to determine any topic suggested to be inane and idiotic, simply because it strikes me thus.  I will allow for brief arguments in response to my rejection, should I post a reason for rejecting it.

4.  I WILL delete or mock any attempted abuse of this opportunity.  I am sticking my neck out here and would like to believe that risk will be respected. 

5.  In responding to questions, I may call for relevance.  It would save time if the relevance for a question is provided at the same time a question is asked, though it doesn't mean that relevance will be perceived in such a manner that I feel compelled to respond.  Likely, I'll simply ask for more explanation.

This is all pretty much how I would like all discussions to run as pertains the seeking of understanding.  But as recent discussions have shown, going back and forth often results in tangents, diversions, equivocating and outright dodging of questions. If I restrain my own desire to question my interrogator, it is my hope that I can exhaust any line of questioning on any given topic to the extent that I have a complete and firm position on it. 

Anybody up for this?

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Can't Support The Pallies.

This appeared on Yahoo this morning.  In my last post, I made the suggestion that the Palestinian people are largely supportive of the hate group that rules them in Gaza, Hamas.  The linked piece seems to support that notion.  The poll shows a 60+% favoring of the Hamas leader for president over Abbas.  This demonstrates a choice for the greater of two evils.  In what parallel universe does one say to one's self, "I choose the guy who insists on using me as a human shield as he constantly lobs missiles at those he insists is my enemy.  I LIKE that idea!!  I'm voting for HIM?"  It's happening in the parallel universe we call "Gaza".

Take off the kid gloves.  Such a people is not worth risking the lives of Israeli soldiers as they seek to end the TOTALLY UNPROVOKED ATTACKS on their fellow Israelis.

This poll should be held up for the world to see (especially given that it was taken by a Palestinian) as Israel tables their surgical military tactics intended to lessen collateral damage, so that they can more effectively kill as many Hamas leaders and subordinates it takes to make them stop attacking Israel once and for all.  Nothing Israel has ever done to the sad and innocent Palestinians was not preceded by heinous and hateful actions against them by the Palestinians.

Right now, we are seeing another example of the intention of the worst elements of islam, as ISIS and their cowardly cohorts just hacked off the head of another innocent victim.  Their "message" is that it is the result of Obama's actions in the Middle East.  It is the same kind of crap Hamas says about why they continue to attack Israel.  It is amongst their favorite propaganda.  When will the world be fed up with this crap?

I have seen videos and articles highlighting muslims who speak out against the insane members of their culture/religion.  Unfortunately, the percentage of such stand up people amongst the savages is less then the percentage of homosexuals.  This means that we can't wait for "good" muslims to successfully alter the culture there.  As far as I'm concerned, they are free to align themselves with us or Israel as we bring the pain.  That is, if we, as a nation, ever grow a spine.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

I Support Israel. The Palestinians? Not So Much.

So we see the usual nonsense arising from the strife in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  Foolish pundits and other idiots, like the president, calling for restraint from the country that is in greatest danger of attack.  I cannot help but wonder at how this has happened, other than outright, albeit unreasonable disdain for Israel. 

As I understand it, this began with the kidnapping and murder of three Jewish teens, though I believe one was an American (I could be wrong here).  It was followed by the murder of a Palestinian teen.  In the latter case, the perpetrator(s) was/were found and arrested.  The perp(s) in the first case is/are still at large, if not lauded as wonderful for killing Jews.  With the commission of the second act, that was all the provocation the Palestinians, led by Hamas, that was needed for the launching of missiles into Israel.  (According to Caroline Glick, 80% of the Israeli population is now within range of Pallie missiles)

I'm not sure of the exactness of the above, but what follows is the routine.  The Pallie/Hamas attacks are launched from amongst the Palestinian population.  They use homes, schools, hospitals and even their own houses of worship to house their arms and launch their missiles.  This, they believe, allows them to protect themselves as they feel relatively confident that the Israelis will balk at attacking these sites for fear of harm to civilians.  In the meantime, they launch literally hundreds of rockets at Israeli targets, with the express purpose of killing as many Israelis, civilian or otherwise, as possible. 

What is the response of the world?  The Israelis are the aggressors who need to show restraint.  Consider this taken from Allen West's website:

"If you want to know just how demented Bill Clinton and his ilk are, take in this quote: “In the short to medium term, Hamas can inflict terrible public relations damage on Israel by forcing it to kill Palestinian civilians to counter Hamas.” So now Hamas is winning because it’s “forcing” Israel to kill civilians?"
(Read more at http://allenbwest.com/2014/07/bill-clinton-hamas-winning-forcing-israel-kill-palestinians/#vaoElYsIgoLOoXHo.99)
 
Can you believe it?  If you've been paying attention, you really have no choice.  
 
I say, "Damn the public relations consequences!"  The Pallies are complicit in their own deaths by allowing Hamas, or whomever is running that evil show, to purposely put them in harm's way.  I believe the Israelis should disregard the consequences and lay waste to as much of Hamas controlled territory as possible.  
 
But wait, Art!  That's fighting evil with evil!  No.  That's doing what is necessary to protect one's people.  What's more, aggressors do not respond to diplomacy, as we've seen since the institution of Israel back in the 1940's.  What does provoke the proper response is pain, and lots of it.  When the Palestinians are tired of burying their dead, when there are seemingly more dead than are those left alive to bury them, then perhaps they will also tire of bringing about their own destruction through seeking the destruction of others.  

It's a sad reality that this is the way wars are won.  Some wish to believe there are "Just War" theories that work in the real world.  That peaceful solutions are possible when dealing with true evil.  Others are too timid to admit who the truly evil are.  We did not win WWII with this attitude.  

Some insist that those like me are proponents of  "war as solution" or "war as the only solution" or "war as the first choice of solutions".  None of this is true.   None of this reflects reality.  The sad truth is that there are times when war is the only solution and against the radical islamists who seek to dominate and subjugate the world, there is no evidence in history that suggests they are likely to be talked into any peace with those who do not want to serve allah as they demand.  

There is also little evidence that there exists enough civilian Pallies who are not down with the islamist cause and determination to eliminate Israel.  These are people who believe it is a good thing to have their children kill themselves killing others.  They are not of any concern to me.  Not against the lives of those who would like nothing more than to lay down their arms once and for all, but cannot and expect to survive surrounded by those who hate them.  

I reiterate that I do not care about a "two state" solution to this crisis.  The Pallies don't deserve a state of their own and have not given any evidence that they ever will.  They never had one in the first place.  They aren't even a real nation.  They were formed for the purpose of attacking Jews.  There are only two options as I see it:  They can change their ways and befriend Israel (and the world) or die.  Period.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Bubba/Dan-I'LL Answer The Question

I've been monitoring the back and forth between Bubba and Dan, and it's going pretty much as expected.  I can't say that I don't understand what the big deal is.  This is how I see it:

Let's assume two sides, since there really actually are.  Since they generally run along political lines that are fairly well understood, I'll use "right side" and "left side" (of course I'm on the right side---the right side morally is just coincidentally the right side politically).

Anyway, Bubba argues for the right side, and Dan argues for the left.  They are each, to one extent or another typical of all who are on each side, at least generally.  And they each engage in a manner that is also, to one extent or another, at least generally, typical of each side.  The right goes to the heart of the matter, dealing in reality, willing to face the truth on truth's terms.  The left, goes to the heart of what they want reality to be, and takes great pains to avoid facing the truth on truth's terms in deference to that altered "reality" they would prefer.

When the right answers a question, the answer is as direct as the question.  The left alters the question to reflect the preferred altered reality, and then answers a question that wasn't asked. 

When the right balks at a question, it is because the question is leading, irrelevant, or takes the discussion down a preferred tangent believed by the left to be more amenable to the altered reality the left prefers.  When the left balks at a question, it is because the question exposes the gaping holes in the altered reality the leftist hoped wasn't so glaringly obvious. 

Maybe I shouldn't paint the entirety of the left with such a broad brush.  But the above is descriptive of what's going on at Dan's blog and is typical of all debates with him.  So I can show Dan how it's done and take the initial questions Bubba put to him and demonstrate how one answers the questions honorably.  I won't answer as if I'm Dan, but answer as if the questions were put to me.  I begin with the two set up questions to which I believe Bubba put forth with an assumption of a positive response from Dan:

Do you believe in orthodoxy and heresy as real categories and not just traditional understandings?

Yes.

Do you really believe that there are essential Christian doctrines?

Yes.

See how that works?  I answered two "yes or no" questions with either a "yes" or a "no", in this case, a "yes".  That's my honest response.  But keep in mind that these were set up questions, as in setting the stage for the real questions of interest to Bubba.  A "no" response would make what follows unnecessary and moot.  There would be no point in asking what follows if a "no" response followed these questions, so the asking was rhetorical.  So here are the actual questions:

NAME ONE ESSENTIAL CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE.

Jesus is God in flesh.

NAME ONE CLEAR TEACHING OF THE BIBLE.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

Note that I didn't ask "essential to whom", as if the question wasn't seeking my opinion only.  Note that I didn't take off on irrelevant asides regarding how some things in Scripture are clear to some and not to others.  I answered as one who convicted in my beliefs, confident that what I believe is true and honest enough to allow my beliefs to be scrutinized and tested openly in a manner that might lead to a better understanding of what is true, or greater confidence that what I already know is true.  If I'm wrong, show me.  I don't want to be wrong, but I do indeed want to know the truth. 

Dan doesn't want to be wrong.  He likes what he wants to believe is true.  I think that's for the most part true for leftists in general, but for Dan I have little doubt of it based on our years of engagement.  It makes perfect sense given his evasive and convoluted style of debate.  It is being played out before our eyes at Dan's blog, though I wouldn't expect it to last much longer.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Just Answer The Question!!

I have overloaded myself with blog and internet discussions and must back off a bit in order to re-organize both priorities regarding which discussions to continue as well as how much personal time I spend doing so.  Two in  particular require the study of articles and opinions in order to properly familiarize myself with the details.  Then, I can plan how best to re-engage so as to stay on track in dealing with the most important points related to them.  Sounds like work.  But then, I did publicly commit and it would be bad form to bail out now. 

Yet, I still try to keep up with the newer discussions, and a quick comment here and there is no different than any quick face-to-face chit-chat in which one might engage in the course of one's busy day.  This here post is being composed while enjoying a late breakfast before chores.  I often sit before the computer while eating, as dinner is the only meal the family regularly shares together. 

Anyway, I've been keeping an eye on the new discussion at Dan's blog, between he had Bubba.  It began elsewhere and as it was off topic there, Dan invited Bubba to carry on with him there.  It is reserved for just the two of them as they both expressed the desire that it remain so. 

There is still, for me, some level of interest and entertainment in witnessing the discussion.  I should have started a pool, or established some over/under wager on the amount of time before Dan two-stepped away from answering a simple and direct question.  It came in the very first response to Bubba's initial comment.  Getting direct answers to simple and direct questions has always been the challenge for people dealing with Dan.  Ambiguity is essential to his belief system.  The more ambiguity, the easier it is to believe as one finds personally favorable. 

Conversely, few of Dan's questions are direct and simple.  They often are leading questions that cannot be answered with a yes or no lest a wrong understanding results, which is pretty much guaranteed.  When I've been faced with such questions by him, I've always endeavored to answer directly and then immediately supply the details with the qualifications that must be presented in order to prevent misunderstanding, but too often (if not always) only the initial "yes" or "no" from me is heard or recorded to then be used against me.

This is what Bubba will have to deal with throughout the exercise for as long as it might last, which is always uncertain. 

As to the two-stepping, there are a few initial questions Bubba poses.  He allows Dan to pick one to answer if that is preferable to Dan.  Here are some of them:

--Do you believe in orthodoxy and heresy as real categories and not just traditional understandings?

--Do you really believe that there are essential Christian doctrines?

These two are really just set-ups for the even more direct questions that follow,  but they are quite direct in themselves insofar as one person is directing the questions specifically to one specific person alone in order to draw out that specific person's own personal opinion.  Get that?  It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks, because I'm asking YOU!

Next comes the two requests, with clarifying explanations afterwards that don't seem to sink in.  Again, they are quite direct and really require nothing more than a direct answer:

-- NAME ONE ESSENTIAL CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE.

-- NAME ONE CLEAR TEACHING OF THE BIBLE.

Bubba then offers two that Dan can use as answers of his own:  The existence of God, and, the historicity of Jesus.

Dan's subsequent responses do little to clarify his position mostly due to the fact that he insists upon consideration for the positions of others.  All of that is irrelevant.  In other words, who cares?  It is DAN'S own position/opinion that is sought, so none of that superfluous crap has any value.  

I have to admit that I need to review the response a few times.  Because Dan is so evasive (under the pretense of seeking clarification), I don't want to misconstrue his positions.  What's more, the conversation is ongoing and I also don't want to misconstrue Bubba's intentions in asking the questions he's asking.  We'll have to wade through the voluminous non-answers Dan will supply to see if a legitimate answer is put forth.  It would help if he'd just answer the question.  But I believe he does as he does because just answering the questions put forth to him would provoke admission that his positions are untenable.  The end of his back and forth with Bubba will demonstrate just how honestly he seeks the truth.