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This Month's Scripture Verse:

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
2 Timothy 3:1-5


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For May 3, 2017

April 28

To R. Scott Clark and his blogpost quote from an article on the first things blog about whether there is a war on science and that challenged who was the real anti-science. Among those who were listed were those who call anti-scientific those who challenge what scientists are saying about a variety of subjects like climate change, abortion, and embryo research. This appeared in Heidelblog

The original article being responded to is at https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2017/04/the-real-anti-science

Below is my response to the article containing the above quote as it was posted in the Firstthings website

quite simply, if approximately 97% of scientists said that the bridge ahead was going to collapse while 3% said it would stand, would you drive your family across the bridge? That is approximately what was said in one of the signs on the march for science day.
Why say there is a war on science? Perhaps it's because despite what a vast majority of scientists say about climate change and man's contribution to it, the evidence is being ignored because of economic concerns. Those economic concerns have more to do with the immediate financial welfare of those with wealth.

Why say there is a war on science? Perhaps it's because the President wants slash funds to the EPA, an agency that bases its regulations and enforcement on what we know science is saying about our way of life. And that just doesn't have to do with climate change. We need to look at the effects of manmade products like GMOs and insecticides and see if what science has discovered so far tells us that we need to pass and enforce regulations to protect the public.
Why say there is a war on science? Perhaps it's because funds to help NASA study the climate and the NIH for medical research are facing funding cuts by the President's proposed budget.

Why say there is a war on science? Perhaps it is because of the funding cuts for education which will affect science education.

When over 90% of the scientists say that there is current problem with ramifications that lie on the horizon, it isn't anti-scientific to question what is being said. After all, according to the article above, 'science is truly never settled.' But if that is the real belief of people, then enacting policies based on current scientific understanding would never wait until 100% of the scientists agree. And yet, those who oppose regulations and polices that address climate change are demanding that no regulations and policies that address climate change should be enacted until the science on climate change is a settled matter. Why? Perhaps it is because those who oppose regulations and policies that address climate change are trying permanently block them because of their economic ideologies and financial concerns. And when the Church does that, it shows that it has yet to learn from history. For prior to the French, Russian, and Spanish Revolutions, the Church sided with wealth and power only to see that they had dishonored the Gospel after the revolutions succeeded.


May 2

To Sarah Stanley and her blogpost that reported on an issue of Religion & Liberty that talked about cleansing the memory of Stalin as well as economic nationalism. This appeared in the Acton blog.

There is plenty to criticize Stalin on. And there are plenty of critics too from past Socialists who criticized Lenin to current ones like Mikhail Gorbachev.

As for global elites getting the boot. Unfortunately, domestic elites are not. And they are the same as global elites it's just that their sphere of control has been reduced. We should note that just because economic nationalism has given global elites the boot, it doesn't follow that the people of a nation can exercise economic self-rule. That is because domestic elites are still so influential at home.

The solution here isn't an all-or-nothing approach where elites rule or are kicked out. We need to get elites to stop practicing their economic apartheid and join the rest of us as equal partners in determining the economy of one's nation. Without this collaboration, a nation will be economically divided and there will forever be a battle of 2 sides wanting to rule over the other.
The real solution can only be found in expanding democracy to the workplace and reestablishing democracy in the public sphere.


To Joe Carter and his blogpost on Trump’s performance in keeping first day promises he made during the campaign. This appeared in the Acton blog.

The first promise commented on shows the mindset of the President who brags about being a detailed person. The value of regulations depends not on raw numbers but on the specifics of each regulation. Do the regulations as a whole provide sufficient protection for all of the stakeholders? Making 2 for 1 bargains on regulations is a bean counting measure. When regulations are dropped that protect the environment for the sake of increasing short-term profits, where is the merit in keeping this bean counting promise? When financial regulations that prevent financial institutions from putting our economy at risk as it was when the collapse of 2008 occurred are dropped, where is the merit in keeping this bean counting promise? And when regulations that protect workers in terms of their safety, benefits, and pay are dropped, where is the merit in keeping this bean counting promise?

Instead of targeting specific regulations, Trump promised to rely on a bean counting general approach toward cutting regulations. At the same time, President Trump describes himself as a detailed person. At some point, we have to realize that his lack of awareness and/or honesty does significantly and negatively affect his presidency.


To Christopher Morrissey and his blogpost that talks about The Benedict Option in light of the choice between nominalism and realism. This appeared in the Imaginative Conservative blog.

At some point, adopting pluralism is to allow for at least some degree or form of nominalism and realism as described above. What is often missed in these discussions is the following question: How will we Christians share society with others? Will we share society as equals and thus work to protect each group's equal status in society? Or will we attempt to become paternalists or worse and draw lines in the sand in an effort to save society from itself? If we pick the former, do we necessarily lose touch with God's reality? if we pick the latter, have we lost awareness for how our efforts to save society impact others?

Dreher's Benedict Option is based on the premise that since Christians have lost their privileged position in society, we must at least partially withdraw from society in order to regroup to save our own traditions and then hopefully to eventually return to prominence. Unfortunately, Dreher suffers from the lack of awareness that all who feel entitled to rule suffer.

The Church must decide to learn how to decide which battles it will fight and which ones it can let go regarding the direction of society and culture. And how the Church shares society with others always provides the general rules for deciding on these battles. In the past, the Church took the the paternalistic or stronger position in terms of how it would share society with others. The Church is now suffering both externally and internally for the control it has tried to exercise over those who do not belong to the Church. The question here becomes will the Church learn from its mistakes?


To Bruce Frohnen and his blogpost on how Alexi de Tocqueville described how America could descend from democracy into a soft totalitarianism. This appeared in the Imaginative Conservative blog.

We might ask who wasn't the beneficiary of the American Democracy de Tocqueville observed? Could it possible be people of color? After all, didn't we have slavery so Blacks certainly weren't enjoying democracy? And weren't we also ethnically cleansing Native Americans from the land and so they weren't enjoying democracy.  And what about women who could not vote and were not treated as equals in society? Were they enjoying democracy?

And if those were some of the people not enjoying democracy, who was enjoying it when de Tocqueville visited? We should note that de Tocqueville regarded British society as being superior to all others. This might help us understand the lack of racial awareness in his view of American democracy. And now that the subjugation of others is being more fully addressed today, shouldn't we be saying that American democracy has expanded from a racially and sexist based democracy to a fuller one? So why would Frohnen focus solely on the faults de Tocqueville noticed while seeming to disregard the alleviation of the faults he failed to notice?

Jeff Halper, an Israeli activist who protects the rights of Palestinians, made an important observation about democracy. He stated in his book An Israeli In Palestine that when a group defined by national identity, language, ethnicity, or religion takes control over a government employing democratic procedures in a diverse society, that such is not a democracy. Rather, it is an ethnocracy. We could call it a group totalitarianism recognizing that that could be a soft or hard totalitarianism. And as such, there is no real democracy especially for those who do not belong to the group in power. So just perhaps, America's descent into soft or hard totalitarianism didn't begin with the satisfying of appetites and materialistic comforts of recent times. Rather, America was already a soft or hard totalitarian nation when de Tocqueville visited. And perhaps he didn't notice because of his views on race.

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