Thursday, June 24, 2010

No Truce On Social Issues

I came across two articles from Illinois Family Institute that I found to be essential reading for conservatives and Republicans. The first is from Laurie Higgins and the second by David E. Smith. They both refer to comments made by Indiana Governor Mitch Daniel(R), a guy I think on the whole to be a very fine governor. He has done a lot to keep Indiana from suffering the fates of other states that have fallen from the effects of liberal thinking. The state of Indiana is doing quite well by comparison to my own Illinois, Ohio, California, Michigan and a host of others in these hard economic times. (Indiana is also the home of Republican Congressman Mike Pence, an example of superior conservative thought and a long-time champion of many of the policies Daniel has put into place in their state.)

But the point here is in reference to something Daniel has said regarding social issues and whether or not it is wise for Republicans to spend much time and effort on them. I personally have heard a right-wing friend or two suggest that spending time on issues like abortion would be detrimental to the cause of steering our nation back toward the clearly superior conservative leadership. As I stated in a humble piece I wrote at American Descent, I don't see how standing for truth and facts can ever be a bad thing.

Some would say that winning enough seats in Congress to regain Republican majorities and/or winning the White House is what matters most. We can't do much if we're in the minority and have no audible voice in the White House. I can't knock this argument entirely, because it's true. We're seeing this now.

But to totally ignore the social issues, especially now, only serves to allow those who are on the blatantly wrong side of those issues (that would be pretty much everyone in the BO administration, most of the Democratic Party and everyone Barry would ever think to appoint to any judicial post) to dictate laws and legislation and policies that would wreak havoc on our culture.

The second article to which I linked counts the costs in dollars to our nation as well as to our national character and it is our character as a nation that concerns me most. Of those issues Smith lists, we have a stituation by which our character is defined by the lust of sexual gratification. I'm no prude, but I can't see how bowing to our lusts makes us a better nation, particularly with all the negatives that go along with it, such as abortions, unwed child mothers, STDs, etc.

One of my liberal visitors has commented that we (mostly me) seem to be obsessed with sex. This is truly a poor understanding of what I have been trying so hard to make clear. What concerns me is the obsesssion of our nation with sex. It has lead to so many problems in our society and indeed, has been a problem throughout history. The left proudly views itself as progressive for its position on human sexuality, but to compare today with all of history shows nothing progressive at all. Instead, it shows the left deludes itself that it has a better grasp of human sexuality which it then uses to justify its own unsavory lusts.

The right needs to find a better voice for defending virtue amongst our citizenry. Like it has with so much else, the right has failed to articulate the benefits of a moral society creates for itself. It has cowered before the mockery of leftwing criticism so that it feels such defense is a losing proposition.

But really. Who cares about mockery if it comes from those so fixated on pleasuring themselves? Are these really the best people to guide us? Look what they've done to our nation so far. It's morally corrupt, it's decadent and it's trying to become more so because for too long, on the social issues, good men have done nothing.


Mark said...

Time for Dan to come in and start his incessant idiocy.

Every great civilization has first decline mortally, which was quickly followed by the eventual death of the empire.

But, of course, Dan will say that's nt true.

Bubba said...

1) A truce on social issues is now even less prudent because the central issue of our time -- the very question of whether this country will continue to champion in any meaningful sense the principle liberty, including individual economic freedom and entreprenuership -- has become a social issue.

2) Those who wish to fundamentally transform this country aren't just collectivists, they're radicals. They seek to destroy our traditional institutions, either through their violent overthrow or through what Andrew McCarthy correctly describes as sabotage: infiltration and subversion. The goal hasn't changed for men like Ayers, just the tactics. They've gone from pipe-bombs to professorships, from seeing the Christian church as an enemy of godless Marxism to seeing it as a useful tool for advancing the same agenda in the name of so-called justice, and from supporting the Black Panthers to supporting a stealth radical who pretends to be a post-partisan moderate, but the radicalism hasn't diminished one iota.

Extreme libertarians like the God-hating Randians could concievably declare a truce with such people, at least on social issues, but not American conservatives who understand that our freedom depends strongly on our institutions.

3) It takes two to tango, and there's no way in Hell that the Left would be interested in a genuine truce on social issues. They'll continue the ratcheting effort to stigmatize all dissent from an agenda that won't stop at finding room for tolerance but seeks to discredit anything but complete acceptance for both today's deviant and destructive behavior, and tomorrow's as well.

4) Specifically about gun rights, which many take to be an expendable social issue: it is precisely when the government is becoming this big that gun rights become more important, because deer hunting and even personal self-defense weren't the explicit reasons for the constitutional right to bear arms. The Second Amendment was surely written with Lexington and Concord in mind.

5) About abortion specifically: if the claims of those who oppose elective abortion are true...

--And how could they be otherwise? the fetus is a living organism, it's a human organism, and it's obviously innocent of any crime that could be tried in a human court that has any legitimacy at all. The deliberate taking of innocent human life is immoral, because it is murder; a legal regime under which nearly 50 million lives have been destroyed, often quite viciously, is nothing short of a holocaust.--

...if the claims are true, then it is a moral outrage to suggest that we should relax our effort to change the culture and the law while millions more are slaughtered.

6) About marriage, specifically: while literally millions of children have been murdered in the womb, untold millions more have been harmed quite deeply by a culture of hedonism, decadence, and self-indulgence. The push for "gay marriage" isn't about regulating marginal relationships for the sake of children who might grow up in the context of those relationships; it's about satisfying the whims of a tiny minority of self-centered adults. It's bad enough we're leaving our children with (at least) tens of trillions of dollars in debt without further crippling their chances for success in life by undermining the unique value of the arrangment that is the most statistically significant in their development: a stable home of one's biological mother and father.

7) I believe that what we need is not a truce on the political front, but a conservative movement that finally starts fighting back, vigorously, on the more important cultural fronts.

Dan Trabue said...


What concerns me is the obsesssion of our nation with sex. It has lead to so many problems in our society and indeed, has been a problem throughout history.

It may be interesting to see a list of the "so many problems" that you believe inappropriate sexuality has led to in our society and throughout history.

Not that I'm disagreeing with the proposition: "Inappropriate sexual acting out leads to problems personally and societally," if that's what you're saying, I can agree.

Still, I'm interested in what your list of problems might be and how that might compare to a list of problems associated with, for instance, greed or hatred or intolerance or oppression or war or environmental destruction or other issues of the day.

The reason I ask is because many churches and church folk - to many of us - seem to concentrate their concern unduly and even unnaturally on sexual misbehavior (real and perceived) and, as you note, tend to make us think that you all are obsessed with sexuality.

Dan Trabue said...


Like it has with so much else, the right has failed to articulate the benefits of a moral society creates for itself. It has cowered before the mockery of leftwing criticism so that it feels such defense is a losing proposition.

But really. Who cares about mockery if it comes from those so fixated on pleasuring themselves?

I can agree that the right has failed to articulate a reasonable case for their positions. As a result, for many (and I suspect an increasing majority), conservative religious folk have become increasingly irrelevant.

And I think it would be a reasonable question to ask, "Who cares if we come across as irrelevant and out of touch with reality?" I would think that you would be concerned.

Marshall Art said...


If it was anybody else, I would be absolutely stunned that a regular visitor would ask me for a list of problems that I know, and any sensible, open-eyed and open-minded person would know, to be the the consequences of a culture obsessed with sex. But you often approach settled questions as if they were never asked in order to either demonize your opponents or uplift yourself.

As to the list itself, I've given a partial in the post itself and have given a more detailed list many, MANY times in the past, both here at Marshall Art's and other blogs. David Smith's article provides a list of another kind, dealing with the costs of ignoring social issues.

As to how these issues compare to others, they are largely ignored EXCEPT by those you consider to be irrelevant. Issues of purity no longer matter to those who celebrate deviant sexual behavior. Instead, without any whiff of Biblical support refer to sex as "a wonderful gift of God". You take your spiritual superiority in focussing on other, equally negative aspects of human nature and add to them socialist notions of what is done with or to the ecology.

It is also nonsense to pretend that other sins are ignored by conservative Christians so as to focus on sexual sins in an "obsessive" manner. The obsession already exists in our culture and THAT is what draws the attention of objective people who really pay attention.

You pretend that sins such as greed go unattended, but we have laws already to deal with the greedy in our society. We have protections against all sorts of sinful behavior, but we also have a tolerance for sexual sin that has lead to so many ills in our society:

-50 million aborted children that we know of. This does not include those lost to chemical abortions through the use of birth control and "morning after" pills which do NOT prevent conception.

-extreme divorce rates, made easier through no-fault laws. That these are not used as an out by those with a self-serving idea of marriage need not be pointed out.

-more STDs and more and younger people afflicted with them.

-more unwed mothers and more of them not even out of high-school

-porn being one of the most profitable internet industries, if not THE most

-medical costs related to all of the above are staggering

-and of course, a whole agenda driven to force acceptance of deviant sexual behavior and the impact of such on our laws, traditions and religious expressions.

You dismiss all this but do so without any rational or evidentiary counterpoint argument. This demonstrates the level of your own corruption.

Dan Trabue said...

I'm not sure what you think I dismiss. Do you suspect I'm an advocate for abortion? For syphillis? For rampant sexual acting out?

I'm not.

Glad to clarify: We're both opposed to sexual acting out and bad results that arise from it.

A little history...

The first unquestionable epidemic of syphilis occurred in Europe at the end of the 15th century. With this first epidemic, came the first chorus of blames. Travelers were blamed, prostitutes were blamed, soldiers were blamed, and of course Columbus was blamed...

It spread quickly and viciously. The city of Lyons became so 'contaminated' with diseased people that in March of 1496 the infected people were expelled outside of the city walls. By 1497, the disease had spread throughout France. Less then a decade later, nearly all corners of Europe were already infected as well.

Shortly after the outbreak, it was noted that babies were born with a disease that seemed similar to syphilis. It seemed as if the entire continent, adults and newborns alike, were affected by this epidemic.

Perhaps as early as the first part of the 1600's, congenital syphilis was recognized as being distinct from adult onset syphilis. They believed it came from the fathers or the wet nurses. It wasn't until the early 1900's that they realized syphilis was transmitted through the placenta.

A second epidemic occurred after the Second World War. The rate of syphilis peaked in the US in 1947 at 106,000 cases. The prevalence of the disease dropped as penicillin became more widely used. Quickly realizing that penicillin wasn't enough to control the disease, a massive educational campaign was launched in 1948.

Syphilis and other venereal diseases were targeted by public health officials using every form of media available to them. Posters, pamphlets, films, radio shows and newspaper articles were all devoted to informing the public about staying safe.

As the program saw success, the number of new cases of STD's dropped, hitting a low in 1956-1957 of only 3.9 new cases per 100,000.

The 1960's saw another jump in the rate of syphilis, but it did not reach epidemic proportions. This was attributed to both the sexual revolution and the reduction of funding for STD awareness programs. It seemed that the public once again needed reminding of the dangers of STD's and awareness campaigns started up once more.

In the 1970's there was a decline in the number of cases and this could be seen as evidence that STD awareness education was working. As tracking of the disease became more sophisticated and survey methods more specific, it became easier to determine which segments of the population the STD prevention programs needed to be directed at. They found that most new cases of syphilis in the 1970's were in homosexual males. This information gave them a new target to direct their programs at.

With continued monitoring, the CDC found a rise in the cases of syphilis in the 1980's in large cities. They found that it was especially devastating among disadvantaged minority groups. This led the CDC to start a prevention education program targeted at people age 15-30 living in urban areas. This has led us to the lowest rates for syphilis in forty years.


Dan Trabue said...

So, just to deal with STDs: I am opposed to them. I am opposed to irresponsible sexual activity that might cause an increase in the suffering caused by STDs.

I support education and medical programs to lessen the negative impact of STDs. In the category of "education," I include support for moral education and spiritual enlightenment (although I reserve the furthering of "spiritual enlightenment" for specifically non-governmental sources, thank you very much).

I think that spikes in STDS throughout history have always been a bad thing.

Glad to clarify.

Dan Trabue said...

Oh, from that same source, there was this quote...

Public health education measures seem to be extremely effective when dealing with syphilis. We can see this by the drop in the rates of new cases when the CDC makes a push for education. Today, the CDC puts 106 million dollars into controlling STD's every year with their prevention education.

In 1996, according to the CDC, there were 4.4 new cases of syphilis for every 100,000 people. This is the lowest it has been since the drop in 1956-1957. Seventy-three percent of these nations’ counties reported no new cases in 1996.

Dan Trabue said...

We have protections against all sorts of sinful behavior, but we also have a tolerance for sexual sin that has lead to so many ills in our society...

Irresponsible sexual behavior DOES cost us all in many ways.

As does irresponsible greed for cheap energy (to the tune of hundreds of billions - if not trillions - of dollars, Gulf Coast, anyone? Iraq invasion, anyone?)

But how many sermons this last year at your church have denounced the "sexually immoral"? And how many sermons have denounced the greed ALL of us have for cheap oil, and a lust for a luxurious lifestyle (cool as we want to be in the summer, warm as we want to be in the winter, travel as much as we want in extreme comfort all the time, all at a irresponsibly cheap cost that foists the actual costs on others)?

I'm guessing many of the former and few if any of the latter. And yet, the latter is a much more costly and deadly problem. The latter gets to fundamental issues of Justice and concern for our neighbor - especially the poor - that is so central to the Bible story and to Jesus' actual teachings.

This is the imbalance that concerns me and my tribe.

Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.

~The Prophet Ezekiel

(There's another test for you: How many times does the "sin of Sodom" come up in your church and how often is it associated with homosexuality, even though the sin of Sodom was that they were arrogant, overfed and did not help the poor and needy? Hence: Focusing on sexual "specks" but ignoring poverty "planks" - straining the gnat and swallowing the camel...)

Anonymous said...

Marshall & Bubba -- great points, as usual.

Classic hypocrisy of libs to push for the sexual revolution, oxymoronic "same-sex marriage," gay pride sermons, crushing and dismembering those pesky unwanted human beings, etc. then chastise us for responding as if we're the one with the obsessions.

Re. Sodom -- typical partial truths from a false teacher to ignore the rest of that passage and the others. If you are one of those compulsive types that reads all the text it seems that those people were inhospitable AND had another strike against them:

Ezekiel 16:50 (ESV)
They were haughty and did an abomination before me. So I removed them, when I saw it.

Jude 7 (ESV)
just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.

2 Peter 2:6–8 (ESV)
if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard);

Dan Trabue said...

As I said, there is nothing there about homosexuality as an identified problem in Sodom. There is CLEAR and ABUNDANTLY supported text telling us clearly that the problems included overindulgence, laziness and a lack of concern for the poor.

And my question remains: How many times have you heard Sodom spoken of in a church service where the sin is identified as homosexuality (which the Bible does NOT state) instead of what the Bible DOES state clearly?

Which is just one of the pieces of evidence that the religious right has an obsession with sexual sins (and sexual "sins").

Marshall Art said...

Please, Dan. Don't bore me with your self-serving and illogical Biblical interpretations.

And while your trying to suggest something irrelevant to the post, don't forget that the CDC has recently shown that 60% of what new syphillis cases that ARE reported come from the homosex community and that homo men are over 40% more likely to contract an STD than are hetero men. This demonstrates how sexual immorality destroys.

That "education" seems to have a positive effect on STD rates, what idiot thinks that promiscuous sexual behavior is a good thing for our society? Why would anyone come to believe that promiscuity would have NO negative consequences? What has gone so wrong that we need routine public service announcements to warn people of how STDs are contracted when simply waiting for marriage would likely reduce all STDs to an absolute rarity?

But no. We can't have that. We can't have people told that sex outside the marriage of a man and a woman is socially unacceptable, can we? Who are we to try to force our, not religion, but common freakin' sense, on other people? If we truly understood social justice, not that socialist crap you spew, we'd understand that those who take risks will have to deal with the negative consequences of those risks on their own. This would handle most, if not all of the negative consequences of those "sins" on which you feel are more worth spending one's time.

Marshall Art said...

As for greed, greed tempts all people. But you like to believe only the successful people in the world have fallen to it. I've never known personally any filthy rich people. Some with whom I've had brief encounters have created their own foundations for helping the less needy, thereby doing more in a week than psuedo-sanctimonious posers like yourself do in years. All the greedy people I've ever met were far from wealthy, with most being less situated than myself.

You can pretend the BPs of the world are exploiters and oppressors if that makes you happy, but they didn't need any worthless tool like Barry O to tell them to pony up for their risk taking. They already had about $63 million in claims in the works before the Barry Shakedown.

Frankly I'm unimpressed with your pretense at concern over the "least of these". Frankly I would wager that you purposely live a life of less consumption because you're too stupid or lazy to go out and bust your butt to create a more comfortable lifestyle that would allow you to donate like you demand the wealthy should do.

Dan Trabue said...

? Who are you arguing with, Marshall? You seem to be holding an argument where you're offering both sides, regardless of what others are actually saying.

You state...

Why would anyone come to believe that promiscuity would have NO negative consequences?

? I don't know what you are saying here? WHO is suggesting that promiscuity has no negative consequences?

Did I not quite clearly say...

"Do you suspect I'm an advocate for abortion? For syphillis? For rampant sexual acting out?

I'm not."

I'll repeat it again so you don't miss it: I'm opposed to sexual acting out, to promiscuity. I'm in support of monogamy and fidelity.

If you're going to argue with yourself, Marshall, I guess that means you're only going to beat yourself...

[wait for it...]

but then, I thought you were opposed to masturbation?

(rim shot)

Dan Trabue said...

As for greed, greed tempts all people. But you like to believe only the successful people in the world have fallen to it.

You're arguing with yourself, again, Marshall. I've not said this, nor do I believe it.

If you're only going to pretend to engage me, but insert ridiculous arguments in place of my ACTUAL arguments, there's no need for me to be here. Just leave my name out of your clever strawman beating.

Marshall Art said...

I believe poverty IS a social issue. Most of it is caused by a combination of various forms of self-gratification, not the least of which is sexual, but definitely also includes greed. People want what they can't afford. People will buy the toys before they can pay the rent. I insist and maintain that poverty is more a result of what the poor have done or not done than by anything any wealthy person or corporation has done to them. Many wealthy people spend time and money creating resources for people to learn how they could become wealthy as well, or simply lessons can be learned from their biographies and autobiographies.

But the Dan's of the world would rather spend their time demanding handouts from the wealthy people they abhor. Far easier to do that than to create one's own fortune from which to donate. Far easier to do that than to preach truth to the poor that they must adopt better game plans for their lives, to delay gratifications of all kinds until there is some way to pay for it.

Marshall Art said...

It's your strawmen I'm arguing against, Dan. You imply what I've said by the words you do say. Now you're going to adjust so as not to be guilty of those implications. Fine. That's nothing new about your debating style.

As to your joke: Sincerely, nice try. Too bad it doesn't score. Foul tip at best.

Oh, and by the way, I never hear sexually themed sermons at my church. I doubt there are really that many churches that do. I listen to a lot of sermons on the radio. Don't hear them there, either (except that I know the people to whom I listen are more Biblically astute than any you follow on such issues and wouldn't say anything like you do on such things as Sodom or homo marriage).

There really shouldn't be a need for such sermons in a Christian church, though now, with so many corrupted churches teaching heresies about homosex, it might be a good idea to cover it more often.

In the same way, I don't hear too many sermons about greed or oppression since such things are pretty basic as well. I'm eternally grateful that I don't hear crappy sermons about Earth Day, either, or idiocies like stewardship of the earth during Easter Week. None of this in any of the sermons I hear either at my church or on the radio. Oh, some of these may come up in the course of a greater lesson, but as I said, what need is there of such things in a truly Christian church regarding such basics? Perhaps you spend too much time in the little kids' Sunday school.

Further, I wasn't using my sarcasm font so I apologize that you didn't get it regarding promiscuity, if indeed you really didn't get it.

As for greed, you have never addressed it amongst anyone other than the very wealthy (as if you know this to be true) or corporations (which I also don't believe you know the first thing about). So my suspicion that you don't much care or believe greed amongst the poor is every bit as rampant as on any other level of the economic scale is likely accurate. I know, I've never seen if such people work to expose themselves.

BTW, did you actually read either of the articles to which I've posted, or am I to assume your links are not worth my time as well? If you have, you've yet to comment on either.

Anonymous said...

M.A., A very good post and your comments here are right on! Dan has so long ago bored me that I now only read a line or two of his posts and then move on. I would think his ego would cause him to want to go post where they agree with him, so he could get some back slapping. mom2

Dan Trabue said...

The links you mention at the beginning of your essay, saying they were "essential reading for conservatives and Republicans"? Well, since I'm neither conservative (not in your sense of the word, anyway) or Republican, no, I didn't. I didn't know I was supposed to.

As to what they say, I fully support y'all hanging on to opposition to gay marriage and abortion as key issues if you want to do so. It will only serve to cast yourselves as irrelevant and make it easier for more reasonable candidates to win, seems to me, so if you think those are important things to oppose, go for it.

As to practically everything else you wrote, since you're not really addressing anything I believe, just your own strawman ideas about what you THINK I believe (even though I've never said any of that nor do I believe it), I'll let you have that ongoing conversation with yourself.

If you ever have any questions/comments about what I actually think or have said, feel free to ask/comment.

Marshall Art said...

Well Dan, your first paragraph shows why your ability to comprehend, interpret, understand and use what YOU call, your God-given reasoning should not be something upon which you should put any confidence or faith. Simply because I described the articles as essential for conservatives (which you are not in any political or ideological sense of the word) or Republicans (which you haven't the aformentioned abilities that would lead you to be so), doesn't in any way mean it is not worthy of a look by anyone else. Since my words were spurred by the those two articles, it is only logical that one would at least wonder what made me think they might be essential reading for ANYONE, even if particularly for conservatives.

If I, and others like me, become "irrelevant" for standing up for obvious truth and righteousness, I can deal with that just fine. The fact that I might become so is why there should be so "truce" on social issues. There are many people like yourself who are too stupid and/or morally corrupted to understand why these issues should be addressed more often by more people. There are even people far more intelligent than yourself, such as Gov. Daniel, who have also lost sight of their importance to our culture, as well as to our pocket-books.

But as Smith's article points out, tax money is being spent on behalf of perverts so that they can better spread their lies and push for what they like to call "rights", but are nothing more than acquiescing to their deviant sexual desires. Now, whether or not you are among those who have lost sense of moral truth, like you have Dan, the fact that tax money is going to support a group who wants to change our culture and our laws on their behalf doesn't seem very American, does it? Imagine giving tax money to a religious organization in order to make it easier for them to change our laws and culture to accept their ways. There's no way on God's green earth you could ever convince me you'd go for that. You'd want someone to articulate why that would be a bad thing for our country to allow such to continue.

In the same way, conservatives need what they haven't much had in the last twenty years or more, which is a routine expression of conservative thought that includes things such as why homos are liars and not entitled to what they think are their rights. An articulate person can make more people understand how they've lied, both to convince so many that their perversions are no different than normal hetero sexuality, as well as to convince so many into thinking there might be some Biblical support for their agenda when there clearly isn't.

An articulate conservative can show more people how abortion is truly what it is, the unjust killing of another human being about 99% of the time it is performed. (It's always the killing {"murder" actually} of another human being---but sometimes it is necessary if the mother's life is threatened).

An articulate conservative can show more people how celebacy outside of REAL marriage is beneficial, not only to society, but why it's beneficial to themselves, which just means society will benefit, too.

As to what you called "strawmen", I will only say that I've done nothing toward you that you haven't done more than once to me, usually along side of something that goes something like this: "Don't you see how that sounds?" My comments were an accurate reflection of the tone of your positions, and/or how they seem to align with such sentiments. They are the consequence of your positions.