Sharia and the Virtue of Hate

If you present inconvenient facts about Islam, you will be called bad names, like hater. But it turns out that hate can be more virtuous than the silence of “tolerance”.

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This video commentary is courtesy of Bill Warner, Director, Center for the Study of Political Islam, copyright (c) CBSX, LLC, PoliticalIslam.com. Use as needed, just give credit to Political Islam and please do not edit the video.

ABOUT POLITICAL ISLAM

Islam is a cultural, religious and political system. Only the political system is of interest to kafirs (non-Muslims) since it determines how we are defined and treated. The Islamic political system is contained in the Koran, the Hadith (the traditions of Mohammed) and his biography, the Sira. Our mission is to educate the world about political Islam, its founder Mohammed, his political doctrine and his god, Allah.

The Five Principles

  • Islam’s Trilogy of three sacred texts is the Koran and two books about the life of Mohammed. When the Trilogy is sorted, categorized, arranged, rewritten and analyzed, it becomes apparent that five principles are the foundation of Islam.
  • All of Islam is based upon the Trilogy—Koran, Sira (Mohammed’s biography) and Hadith (his Traditions). Most of the Islamic doctrine is political, not religious. Islam is a political ideology.
  • Islam divides the world into Muslims and unbelievers, kafirs.
  • Political Islam always has two different ways to treat kafirs—dualistic ethics. Kafirs can be abused in the worst ways or they can be treated like a good neighbor.
  • Kafirs must submit to Islam in all politics and public life. Every aspect of kafir civilization must submit to political Islam.

These Five Principles can be put in five words—Trilogy, politics, kafirs, dualism and submission. These five words bring clarity and ease of learning about political Islam.

Up until now Islam has been hard to understand because it seemed complex and contradictory and did not make sense. But, once you see how the Five Principles work, everything falls into place. Complexity becomes simplicity. Chaos becomes order.

Learn more by clicking here.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of the cover of a Quran taken by ~crystalina~. This photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. The use of this photo in no way suggests that they endorse this video or the use of the work

An open letter to America’s Veterans

I have been paying attention to your plight to gain the health and financial benefits you so deserve and have earned through your service to the nation. There is no reason for you to die so soon without them, as you have served with honor and came home to begin a new life in the “pursuit of happiness” afforded you by the US Constitution and under the patient care rights in each state.

Therefore, on your behalf and in my limited capacity to meet with each and every one of you I want you all to know that I am looking into ways that I can best help you and your family. I am seeking ways to cut the corners and wait time for you to obtain health care and financial services, including pensions, you have earned in your battle to keep America the best country in the world free from tyranny.

As a resident of Florida I have contacted our state Department of Veteran Affairs (FDVA) in Tallahassee, Florida. I was put in contact with a wonderful lady who had the time to listen to my concerns. I was given information regarding a new law passed by Congress, which reduces to 300 days the initial file review for approval or denial of all VA claims. Currently the file review time is 600+ days. President Obama has set a goal of 125 days to process VA claims.

Meanwhile what does the Veteran do for services?

According to FDVA, clinics and private physicians services can be accessed immediately. I discussed with FDVA the record numbers of reported deaths of our Florida veterans. It is at an alarming rate of 22-55 per day, not including those who pass away, in increasing numbers, from suicide. I asked my contact if she had any information on what the Florida Congressional delegation was doing at this time, in addition to the US Department of Veterans Affairs. The only action is the new law reducing the wait time for initial medical review. Time to contact your Florida member of Congress?

So, if a disabled Florida veteran is now waiting 300 days for approval and is not a resident in a long term care facility then what? It is understood that a resident in a long term care facility will receive care and we know that in a facility there is a department that oversees the admissions and payments the veteran is likely to have, at least short term via Medicaid. However, those who do not have long term care or home care are living under the bridges. How Sad.

I have been provided with the following calling numbers nationwide for help. For those in long term care centers contact the OMBUDSMAN PROGRAM: 1-888-831-0404. Out side of a long term center call: The Agency on Health Care: 1-888-419-3456. In Florida you may call: 1-863-534-5220.

Don’t be afraid to call and report your concerns, you are protected from being punished and so is the veteran. There is a right to reasonable care for our veterans. This will help agencies provide a caring Advocate to the veteran. In addition the state will provide available support to the family and community on a temporary basis. A spokesman generally can break the barriers.

Education is provided to those who are considered high Suicide risk in addition to counseling. Press reports on those homeless veterans help highlight the immediate needs. There has been help with back to school and job training in Florida. On March 3rd, 2014 in an e-mail the Florida Department of Veteran Services advised me that “a copy of my letter has been sent to Mr. Brian Meniles, Regional Director for Senator Marco Rubio. Mr. Meniles is the Florida Department of Veteran Affairs Benefits Director for Senator Rubio.

I believe those who live outside of Florida could follow this process and likely inform their state Department of Veterans Affair of what Florida has done. Please feel free to ask for my help by contacting me via my Facebook page. I will try to assist each veteran and their family in any way I can.

Now the wound has been opened so let us all work together to close the wound so that our Veterans receive the care and services along with pensions they have earned. Speak up or keep quiet, the choice is yours.

Concerned-Veterans-for-America-Circle-LogoOne national group that has focused on the plight of America’s warriors is Concerned Veterans for America. The have started the VA Accountability Project, which states the problem as:

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is failing America’s veterans. For too long, veterans of all generations — and their families — have been underserved, overburdened, and flat-out ignored by an unaccountable bureaucracy. Veterans submit claims for battlefield injuries…and then wait for years.  Veterans seek basic medical diagnosis…and then wait for weeks.  And in the most tragic cases, veterans are given sub-standard care…and lose their lives in VA facilities.  Families, along with their veterans, share the burden of these bureaucratic failures.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image was taken by Addison Mohler, a refuge wildlife biologist for Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge, who enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps on his 17th birthday during the height of Desert Storm. He says: “I wanted to a be grunt and was guaranteed it, so after boot camp I went to Marine Combat Training and School of Infantry a few miles up the road at Camp Pendleton. After graduating, I was sent to the Fleet Marine Force, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines (Get Some!), which is the most decorated unit in the Marine Corps and based in Camp Pendleton at San Mateo. My days were spent shooting (every weapon organic to a Marine), cleaning weapons, running, jumping out of helicopters, shooting some more and running some more. I won a competition to put me into a platoon of Marines that followed Seal Team 9 around with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, Special Operations Capable in case they needed a reactionary force.” Mohler has a great story about dissecting a mouse that had been killed and identifying “its parts on an MRE box. My lieutenant told me I should be a biologist. Fast-forward 100 years later…I am.“ This photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

“WHO AM I TO JUDGE?”

Happy one year anniversary to Pope Francis. He has taken the world by storm, curbed the role of the Vatican Second-in-Command all the while holding a “Global Open House”.

It seems almost impossible to think that a full year has gone by that we witnessed that plume of white smoke rising from the Sistine Chapel chimney, signaling the election of Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, as the successor to Pope Benedict XVI, after the former pontiff abruptly resigned in early February. An entire year has gone by and the entire world has noticed.

From atheists to the liberals to the homosexuals to the media in every country, the 266th Roman Catholic pope has made a mark for himself and the Holy Catholic Church these past 365 days. I refer to his approach as a “Global Open House”. He has invited everybody to the banquet table and has gotten everyone’s undivided attention by using “5” simple words –

“WHO AM I TO JUDGE?”

Those are “5” simple words. Just a simple question…but, boy, has it garnered a ton of media attention all over the world. It basically stems from the Bible and the approach that Jesus, Himself, used in all that He did during his three years of ministry. He ate with the sinners, hung out with tax collectors and prostitutes, and never judged anybody on how they looked, dressed or acted. Jesus simply accepted every person as they were. That is so beautiful and so noble.

Jesus walked the walk as twelve men followed him, with another 1.2 billion followers closely behind them.

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Coat of Arms of Pope Francis.

Skip over Saint Peter, Pope John Paul II and fast forward to the Year 2014. We once again, find a charismatic person in the Catholic Church who seems to be walking very closely in Jesus’ footsteps. Meet Pope Francis – one year later. One year as the new Holy Father. One year after shaking up the entire Vatican, the Roman Curia, the liberal media and every person he comes into contact with. And, he has come into contact with millions. And, he has yet to “judge any of them”.

Come follow me and I will make you fishers of the less judgmental. It worked 2,000 years ago. Will it work today?

In this day and age, where the liberals and the immorals have taken center stage in our society, it is easier to listen to a very open pope who has invited them all to the banquet table – regardless of what their morals are; regardless of who they voted for; regardless of what gender they marry; and regardless of their views on the abortion. Only because Pope Francis uttered those world famous words on a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Rome, the entire world has now used it to their advantage. It has become a defense mechanism. It has become a manipulator.

It has become a great cliche. It is a misguided way to deflect any type of pressure from one’s actions. It is basically, “the easy way out”.

After all, if you continue saying “Who am I to Judge” every time anybody asks you a question – how can you go wrong? Heck, Jesus started it and used it on a daily basis. Pope Francis is continuing it by carrying the baton. Could you imagine me, as a former NCAA Basketball Official, telling two irate coaches on the sidelines: “Who am I to Judge?”

But, how long can one continue to use this ambiguous phrase?

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St. Paul statue in front of St. Peters Basilica (Vatican). Sculptor: Adamo Tadolini. Courtesy of Ang MoKio.

And, where is Pope Francis drawing that very thin red line? Again, is the Holy Father using “Who am I to Judge” as a way to show the entire population that the real Christians and Catholics in this world are not supposed to judge and are supposed to accept everybody, regardless? That we have nothing against the gay lifestyle. Does this simple phrase open up a can of worms and now demonstrates to the entire world that “anything goes”?

Is this going to be the new phrase to replace the old one – “I am taking the 5th”?

“Taking the 5th” is the easy way out. One does not have to answer the question – even in a court of law. “I am taking the 5th”. “Who am I to judge”? Are they not almost identical?

Is it almost a cop-out? Will those five simple words that the Holiest of all Catholics made famous, now going to become the slogan and battle cry for the liberals, unbelievers and sinners? For the blatant homosexuals? For the pro-Abortionists? Is this the phrase that they are now going to use in order to manipulate the rest of our “straight” society? The phrase that they will use to get their way and continue to cram down the homosexual lifestyle to all of America?

My prayer this Lenten Season is that the well-liked Pope Francis comes strong to the entire world some time this Year 2014 – maybe during the joyous Advent Season – and explains to 6.8 billion people in the world what he meant by “Who am I to Judge”?

Claiming to be a “Son of the Holy Catholic Church”, I can only pray that once he gets everybody’s undivided attention, he sits down in front of the chalk board and teaches all of these liberals, homosexuals and pro-Abortionists that “there is a lot more to those 5 words” that he was so famously quoted for saying.

Now, are you all ready to take notes? Lesson One.

 

RELATED COLUMN: Pope Francis Curbs Role Of Vatican Second-In-Command

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is by Thierry Ehrmann and is of a Pope Francis graffiti in the “Abode of Chaos” museum of contemporary art, in Saint-Romain-au-Mont-d’Or, Rhône-Alpes region, France. This image is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

“Pro-Abortionist” Nancy Pelosi to Receive Planned Parenthood’s Highest Award

Just when we thought we had heard it all – along comes the “Annual Planned Parenthood Awards Banquet” – where on March 27th these infamous “murders of the innocent” gather together to hand out and award the person who exemplifies their mission statement best – that of promoting and endorsing the murder of the innocent at any cost. And, the winner of the 2014 Margaret Sanger Award goes to – Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. What is interesting is that Rep. Pelosi graduated from Trinity College in Washington, D.C. in 1962. Over a century ago, Trinity College was founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur as the nation’s first Catholic liberal arts college for women.

sangerph

Margaret Sanger (1883-1966), Editor of The Birth Control Review from 1917 to 1938. Founder of Planned Parenthood. Click on the image to read quotes from Sanger.

Yes, Pelosi is a Catholic who endorses abortion as much as President Obama, perhaps even more so. Nancy will step up to the podium on March 27th to accept this “prestigious” Sanger award. But who was Margaret Sanger?

Margaret Sanger’s purpose is best illustrated by this quote:

“More children from the fit, less from the unfit — that is the chief aim of birth control.” – Birth Control Review, May 1919, p. 12

Sanger was the founder of Planned Parenthood and strong supporter of Eugenics. Edwin Black, author of War Against The Weak, writes, “The global effort to help women make independent choices about their own pregnancies was dominated by one woman: Margaret Sanger… Motherhood was to most civilizations a sacred role. Sanger, however, wanted women to have a choice in that sacred role, specifically if, when and how often to become pregnant.”

Black notes, “… Sanger vigorously opposed charitable efforts to uplift the downtrodden and deprived, and argued extensively that it was better that the cold and hungry be left without help, so that the eugenically superior strains could multiply without competition from ‘the unfit.’ She repeatedly referred to the lower classes and the unfit as ‘human waste’ not worthy of assistance, and proudly quoted the extreme eugenic view that  human ‘weeds’ should be ‘exterminated. Moreover, for both political and genuine ideological reasons, Sanger associated closely with some of some of America’s most fanatical eugenic racists.” Sanger stated, “My criticism, therefore, is not directed at the ‘failure’ of philanthropy, but rather at its success.” [Emphasis added]

Sanger’s Eugenics efforts inspired Hitler, Himmler, Eichmann and Dr. Mengele. They knew each others ideas, methods and ideals quite well in the late 1930’s, which was intended to create a “a race of thoroughbreds“. Hence, the Holocaust was born in America and transhipped to Germany where it was elevated to the extermination of enemies of the state to an industrial level. The result was 20 million people systematically murdered – including 6 million Jews. Then Sanger and Hitler, today Pelosi and Obama. Two matches made “Far from Heaven”.

Winning the “Margaret Sanger Award” is the equivalent of Hitler winning the Nobel Peace prize.

So, on this “8th Day of our ever-sacred Lenten Season and 40 Days for Life read about how deranged our society has gotten since Obama took office only five years ago. The evermore-progressive Democrat Party is not the same party as we knew and respected  under President Grover Cleveland. They are now the “Party of Satan” as everything that this group is affiliated with has to do with the intrinsic evils that they have single-handedly brought into our present culture. When one embraces the likes of Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood and thinks it is an honor to win an award that recognizes you as a person of immoral character, of liberal thoughts, and of promoting the killing of innocent babies – you must be deluded at best and  at the worst deranged. It hurts me even having to read this article, let alone, write about it.

But, if we are to do something about this “culture of death” that the Sangers, Obamas and Pelosi’s of this world embrace, we better do something to try to reverse this curse and do it swiftly. We can complain all we want. We can curse at the wall. We can write emails all day long to vent our anger and frustration. We can criticize all we want until the “cows come home”. Or, we can try to do something about it.

Like attending “America’s Finest Hour” on Tuesday evenings at the Cathedral of St. Ignatius at 6:00 p.m. You may also pick up the phone and call Jane Brill at (561) 889-9212 or Melanie Hill at: (561) 676-2337 to join “40 Days for Life” at either of their two locations. You may also come out twice a month to demonstrate at abortionist, Dr. Daniel Sacks’ office on the corner of Okeechobee and Benoist Farms Road, West Palm Beach, FL.

You can do so many things to “make a difference” in our society – but, if one just simply reads this column and feels a bit guilty that you are indeed, not doing a damn thing about our dire situation in our country and just hit the “DELETE” button – you might as well hit the “DEFEAT” button. How many times are you going to replay this same scenario? And, if you do hit that “Defeat” button – where does that take you?

Do yourself a favor and come out one Tuesday night for our prayer group at 6:00 p.m. at the Cathedral so that we can pray for you and give you some sense of hope. As it is hope that keeps us “Pro-Lifers” going. With all the madness that we see on a daily basis in our country, it is hope that gives us that added intangible that allows us to keep doing what we are doing, day after day.

Is today the day that you are going to “break that mold” and do something different? Something for somebody else? Something to make our world a better place to live in? Something for the most vulnerable in our society? Speak up, folks – for our precious unborn babies cannot.

RELATED STORIES:

Ala. Supreme Court: ‘Unborn Child Has Inalienable Right to Life From its Earliest Stages’
Hillary Clinton: Abortion Needed for Equality —and Human Development…
Newly crowned Miss Pennsylvania, Valerie Gatto, was conceived in rape
Abortion Providers Don’t Inform Authorities about Pregnant 11 year old

RELATED VIDEO: Breaking the language barrier – 40 Days for Life in Croatia

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American Flag Buffoonery in the 9th Circuit Court

The 9th Circuit Court of Buffoons has done it again…made a ruling so blatantly unconstitutional the Supreme Court will have to spank them…again.

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The featured photo is of Patriotic old women making American flags. They were born in Hungary, Galicia, Russia, Germany, Rumania. Their flag-making instructor, Rose Radin, is standing. The photo was taken circa 1918

Refusing to Associate Isn’t Wrong by Brian Lasorsa

I was troubled by a column that ran in The Freeman last week. Many other libertarians and conservatives were, too. Author Casey Given offered a convoluted critique of Arizona’s Senate Bill 1062, colloquially known as the “antigay bill” and the “religious liberty bill,” depending on whom you ask. Given claimed that hidden beneath the proposed legislation lurks a “homophobic push to protect the right to discriminate against gays.”

To be clear, the bill makes no reference to sexuality. Not a single line, word, nor letter alludes to sexual orientation. Given acknowledges this but, like other critics, believes that we can deduce malice through a faulty analysis of existing federal statutes. In other words, since the Civil Rights Act (CRA) only prohibits discrimination against race, sex, and religion, and since SB 1062 isn’t an override of the CRA, Arizona must be trying to take advantage of certain loopholes.

We have a term for this: cherry-picking.

SB 1062 does one thing and one thing only: It aligns Arizona state law with the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, expanding the circumstances under which religious liberty can be used as a defense against claims of discrimination in court. “It does not (unlike the recent, equally controversial Kansas law) prescribe the outcomes of those hearings,” Brandon McGinley writes at The Federalist. That means, had SB 1062 passed, a jury still would have been able to find an individual guilty of unlawful discrimination if his or her religious freedoms weren’t in jeopardy of facing “substantial burden” otherwise.

The definition of “substantial burden” is a question for the courts. It can pertain to several categories of people—homosexuals, polygamists, unwed sexual partners—as well as to a diverse group of activities, including meal service and overnight accommodations. Was the legislation reactionary? Who knows? Maybe its sponsors’ actions were sparked by the Christian woman in New Mexico who declined to photograph a lesbian couple’s commitment ceremony and was subsequently charged with (and fined $7,000 for) violating the state’s Human Rights Act. Or maybe they were further encouraged when a husband and wife in Oregon, citing their Christian values, refused to bake a cake for another lesbian couple’s wedding and were forced to shut down their business.

Either way, the motivations behind these laws and the laws’ effects in the real world are completely separate discussions. And to condemn a state legislature as “bigoted” while failing to elucidate the broad and comprehensive nature of the bill in question is not only a cheap rhetorical ploy but also a careless interpretation of its text.

Let’s move past Arizona’s legislation, though. Libertarianism is deeply rooted in the freedom of association. The author’s portrayal of this right as an “excuse” seemed to be the highest point of contention for readers. As one commenter explained, “The thing that bothers me isn’t different viewpoints within libertarianism. Rather, it is promoting viewpoints that try to change the meaning of libertarianism from consistent defense of liberty to something quite different.” If libertarians can defend the KKK’s right to free speech without being charged with racism, we should be able to defend discriminatory business practices—be they against homosexuals, blacks, or any other category of human beings—without facing accusations of bigotry, a criticism much more fit for the cultural realm than the political one.

Individual liberty is not a social commentary. It doesn’t aim to form a consensus on the “right” or “wrong” way to exercise a freedom; it merely acknowledges the virtue of that freedom’s existence. Discrimination is nothing except the act of making a distinction, and in our communities it can have an ordering function as effective as those which govern the marketplace.

ABOUT BRIAN LASORSA

Brian LaSorsa is a columnist in the United States. He is an advocate of the Austrian School of economics and enjoys spending money on classic literature and slasher films.

Gay lobby pushing Radical Anti-bullying law in Massachusetts

Homosexual lobby pushing radical changes to Mass. school “anti-bullying” laws — to silence opposing opinions, force diversity training, and more.

Passed House, now in Senate. This must be stopped!
To the rest of the country: This could be coming to you.

The homosexual lobby is now putting a full-court press on the Massachusetts Legislature to pass H3909 which would change the state’s school “anti-bullying” law — to completely silence any negative discussion of those behaviors and threaten schools and administrators that do not comply. 

They have made this a top priority. On Feb. 24, it quietly passed the House by a large margin (145-4!). It is now in the Senate Ways and Means Committee, and could go to the full Senate any day.

The front page of the hardcore Boston homosexual newspaper Bay Windows brags that they’re getting closer to passing the bill.

Part of a larger agenda

For years MassResistance has been exposing how the homosexual movement is using legitimate school bullying concerns across the country to hijack anti-bullying legislation and push laws that force their agenda on children and all school employees. This is just the latest on the homosexual movement’s obsession with the nation’s public schools.

What this bill would do

Their stated goal is to use the anti-bullying laws to “change the overall climate and culture” in the every school in the state by “addressing bigotry and discrimination.” In other words, the goal is not to reduce bullying per se, but topunish opinions by students and staff that are critical of homosexual or transgender behaviors, or of their movement.

The major features of H3909 are:

(1) It would require the so-called “enumerated categories” of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to be written into the current anti-bullying law. This would allow all the sections of the law to focus on those behaviors, rather than just the general population of students.

(2) It would include special yearly diversity training (labeled “professional development”) for all school employees, as well as similar sessions for students, based on the “enumerated categories.” National homosexual groups such as PFLAG have already indicated they are ready to provide this training to schools!

(3) It would require the use of “school climate surveys” in every school. These are invariably created by national homosexual groups and are notoriously unscientific. But by “proving” there is a dangerous climate for “gays” in schools, the activists demand more “gay” programs (and funding) from state lawmakers.

(4) It would impose a very heavy requirement of record-keeping and reporting requirements of every “bullying” incident, real or suspected, for every school. Every school employee would be responsible for reporting this information. Since this is extremely subjective, and there are penalties for not reporting a possible incident, it would easily be used by activists to increase funding for agenda-driven programs.

The requirements of this bill also include any private schools and religious schools that accept “special needs” children through an agreement with the state.

Interesting reaction in Boston Herald

After the House passed H3909 the liberal Boston media generally portrayed it as a positive next step, without exploring what it actually does. But the Boston Heraldeditors actually read the bill and saw how ridiculous it was — even though they had gone along with the original bill. On March 3 they published this surprisingly strong editorial against it.

Boston Herald editorial,March 3, 2014.

That editorial attracted this revealing Letter to the Editor, published on March 5, from the homosexual group MassEquality and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The ADL has alienated a lot of the Jewish community by their shameful promotion of the homosexual agenda, and worked closely with the homosexual groups pushing the original law.

Note that the last line in the letter summarizes their true goal with this legislation:“The proposed updates will help schools to change the overall climate and culture by addressing bigotry and discrimination” (.e., punishing contrary opinions voiced in schools on homosexuality).

Letter to the Editor from MassEquality and ADL, March 5, 2014

History of the law

In 2005 and 2007 there were several unsuccessful attempts by radical groups to pass politically motivated anti-bullying laws in the Legislature. Each timeMassResistance exposed their agendas and was able to stop the bills in committee.

Then in 2009, the Massachusetts homosexual lobby was determined not to be stopped. They teamed up with several radical state and national homosexual groups (and the ADL) and used the tragic suicides of two students in Massachusetts as the basis to introduce the most radical anti-bullying bill ever attempted.

They employed a massive well-financed, and sophisticated media campaign to arouse the public on this issue and the desperate need for legislation. It was very effective. Over several months they placed barrage of articles and feature stories of bullying incidents in newspapers, radio, TV, and magazines, that often dripped with emotion.

MassResistance fought back

However, MassResistance fought hard to get the truth out. We were a major presence at the bill’s public hearing in November 2009 confronting the waves of activists and “experts” they brought in. And we warned the legislature that the bulk of the bill was taken from the websites of national homosexual advocacy organizations.

After the hearing, MassResistance continued to lead lobbying efforts in the State House. These efforts ultimately helped stop some of the most outrageous aspects of the bill. (In fact, the homosexual lobby acknowledged that they were “advised by key legislative leaders that the time wasn’t quite right” to include “enumerated categories” and other radical features in the law.)

Passed unanimously in 2010

But the climate of hysteria generated by the PR campaign could not be derailed, and in May 2010, after some changes and compromises, the final bill passed unanimously in both houses.

Here is basically what it does. Even though the homosexual lobby didn’t get everything they wanted, the (pro-gay) chairman of the Education Committee still (rightly) called it “the strongest anti-bullying legislation in the country.”

“Special Commission on Bullying Prevention”

In return for the homosexual lobby’s concessions in the 2010 law, the politicians included a section that created a temporary 7-member “Special Commission on Bullying Prevention” headed by the Attorney General. This committee was to hold meetings across the state and “investigate” to see if any “updates” were needed to the anti-bullying law, and report back to the Legislature by June 30, 2011.

The “special commission” was a sham. Their public meetings were little more than a front to give the homosexual groups a forum to “officially” come up with their desired changes. Nevertheless, MassResistance submitted written testimony at a February, 2011 meeting so that we would be on the record describing whatshould be done.

Gay lobby comes back again for what they really wanted

Within days of the passage of the 2010 law, the homosexual lobby announced that they’d be back again for what they really wanted: enumerated categories and the ability to use the law to directly force their agenda on students and faculty.
At the beginning of the 2011-2012 session they filed a bill with their updates, but MassResistance and others fought hard and it died in committee.

This session, however, they’ve made it a top priority. In January, 2013, they filed bill H454, which later temporarily became H3721, and is now H3909 They’ve framed this as the “official” recommendation of the Attorney General’s “Special Commission on Bullying Prevention.”

Text of the current anti-bullying law, with the changes that H3909 would make to it.

Full-court press at May 30, 2013 public hearing for new bill

On May 30, 2013, the Joint Education Committee held a public hearing for the new bill. Many of the same radical special interests flooded the hearing as in 2009 to get the original bill passed, with nearly identical emotional horror stories of bullying incidents that were happening to helpless children.

On May 30, 2013 the homosexual lobby filled the hearing room with their supporters and testifiers. MassResistance was there to represent the pro-family position.

It was an eerie feeling. The Massachusetts anti-bully law — “the strongest anti-bullying bill in the country” — had been in effect in every school for over three years. But it was as if it had never been passed at all. The legislators were told over and over again about terrible bullying going on across the state. And the “only” thing that would stop all this would to pass their new bill!

Leaders of the major homosexual groups in the state were there to testify.
[MassResistance photos]

Panel – from left to right: 

Deputy director ofMassEquality, the state’s major homosexual lobbying group.

President of PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) radical national group that targets children in schools.

Attorney at GLAD (Gay and Lesbians Advocates and Defenders) homosexual legal group.

 

Arline Isaacson, co-chair ofMassachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus. She is the major lobbyist for the homosexual movement in Massachusetts.

Executive Director of the (state-funded) Massachusetts Commission for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Youth.

Past president of PFLAG ( at left).

At right is mother of a “9-year-old transgender son” (i.e., a girl) who said the child gets “constant taunts and comments” at school — thus the need for the “enumerated category” of “gender identity.”

 

And of course, Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, who chaired the “Special Commission on Bullying Prevention” came to testify that the Legislature must adopt this new bill.

The committee was told over and over again how “enumerated categories” and the accompanying data collection is “very critical.” The “climate” of schools in the state towards homosexual and transgender behavior must be changed, they said. Even conversation that is “unkind” regarding homosexuality cannot be allowed!

The president of PFLAG described how they are ready to come in and conduct the mandated “training” sessions to students and faculty. “The current law does not go far enough” she told the committee, because teachers still do not properly address a boy wearing a dress as “she.”

The attorney from GLAD said that this bill will “take our bullying law and really make it work.” Specific enumeration and the gathering of statistics will greatly facilitate this, she said. GLAD representatives will be able to come in and “educate students about their rights.” And pro-homosexual teachers need the stronger law to effectively  “stand up” in ways they can’t now. It’s “inconceivable and inexcusable” that the law doesn’t have these things, she added.

MassResistance testifies

Then Brian Camenker of MassResistance testified, and basically threw cold water on things.

Camenker also brought up the fact that the same weekend the 2010 bill passed, the Boston Globe published an article quoting behavioral scientists that these types of programs haven’t worked anywhere. That’s because they’re concocted by political activists to push a social agenda. And in this case, the 2010 bill passed without any amendments, by both houses unanimously with no substantial debate,during that period of media-induced anti-bullying hysteria.

WATCH VIDEO: Brian Camenker of MassResistance testifies against H3939 at public hearing.

Terrible vote as House passes H3909. As noted above, H3909, as horrible a bill as it is, sailed through the House on Feb. 24 by the lopsided margin of 145-4 (See the roll call vote HERE).  In other words, just about all of the Republicans voted for this monstrosity. Only Reps. Jim Lyons, Marc Lombardo, Keiko Orrall, and David Vieira had the sense enough to think for themselves and do the right thing. This ought to wake us all up.

The media PR campaign continues . . .

The media PR campaign has started to come back — to arouse the public with emotional bulling stories and claim that “new legislation is needed.”  Here’s just one recent example.

Left-wing Boston Heraldcolumnist Jessica Heslam can always be counted on to carry water for their latest causes. This was from Feb. 27.

Good people everywhere must take action NOW!

The message that the legislature needs to hear:

The proponents of Bill H3909 are using the argument that the current anti-bullying law “isn’t working” and that it desperately needs to be “improved” by adding these new requirements and mandates.

If the current law is not working, then the public deserves to know exactly why. But to our knowledge, there have not been any actual studies of that.

And if changes need to be made, why aren’t actual behavioral scientists involved, instead of the same special-interest political groups that gave us the current law? These changes will only add more unfunded and unworkable burdens onto the public schools without any credible evidence that they will improve the bullying situation in any way.

Finally, it’s very disturbing that these changes are being predominately pushed by homosexual activist groups. This is clearly an attempt by the homosexual movement to hijack the anti-bullying law for its own narrow political ends. They do not appear to be the least bit interested in the general welfare of bullied children. It’s not worth risking the well-being of vulnerable children over this ill-gotten experiment.

This terrible bill must be completely rejected.

Right now the bill is in the Senate Ways and Means Committee. But any day now it could be sent to the Senate floor, where the danger of passing is greater! It needs to be “killed” in committee right now, before that happens.  

So you MUST contact these legislators IMMEDIATELY.

Senate Ways and Means Committee
Massachusetts State House, Room 212
Boston, MA 02133

Chairman:
Stephen Brewer (D-Barre)
617-722-1540
Stephen.Brewer@masenate.gov

Vice-Chairman:
Jennifer Flanagan (D-Leominster)
617-722-1230
Jennifer.Flanagan@masenate.gov

Asst Vice-Chairman
Sal DiDomenico (D-Everett)
617-722-1650
Sal.DiDomenico@masenate.gov

Contact the other committee members (14) here:
https://malegislature.gov/Committees/Senate/S30

Please feel free to contact MassResistance if you can volunteer more time to this, or if you need more information.

On Vouchers In General and Particularly the 2014 All-voucher Arizona Push

Over the past year, I have received three glossy mailouts telling me that I can “enroll my child in private school for free.” The last one included the message, “Time is running out!” and added, “Is your child stuck in a failing school? Send them to a private school for FREE.”

Nothing is “for free.” Someone must pay.

I live in Louisiana, so this advertisement is tailored to my state:

Thanks to the Louisiana Scholarship Program, students attending a C, D, or F school– or entering Kindergarten– whose family meets income requirements, can get a scholarship to a private school of your choice– for FREE! 

Ahh, but TIME IS RUNNING OUT, my friends!

As an additional lure, I am told that if I visit the Louisiana Scholarship Program website, I can “enter to win a $500 back-to-school shopping spree!”

It sure sounds like someone really wants to make it appear that vouchers (the undressed term for these “scholarships”) are more popular than they really are.

So, who is pushing this effort?

The card includes the following small print:

Paid for by the Alliance for School Choice

It should come as no surprise that Carrie (Walton) Penner sits on the board of the Alliance for School Choice (ASC), a group co-founded by the late John T. Walton.

As in Walmart Waltons.

The irony behind telling Louisiana residents that vouchers can save children from C, D, or F schools is that the Waltons are also huge supporters of charter schools (just look at the donations/ revolving credit they offer to charters based on their 2012 990). In Louisiana, the Waltons funded the OneApp open-application fiasco for the state-run Recovery School District (RSD)– a district of over 80% charter schools– most of which are rated C, D and F, even by the 2013 letter grade inflated manipulation (otherwise, there would not be so many C’s).

So, the Waltons are paying for advertisements to push vouchers that can “save” RSD children from the “failing” schools that the Waltons also push.

It’s just too rich.

ASC wields its influence nationwide, even offering model voucher legislation. (Sure sounds like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC}, doesn’t it?)

For Legislators

The Alliance for School Choice supports several pieces of model legislation. Download these bills to see how school choice can work in your state.

One such “piece” is the Education Savings Account Act:

Education Savings Account Act
This bill creates an education savings account program that allows parents to use the funds that would have been allocated to their child at their resident school district for an education program of the parents’ choosing. Download the Smart Start Scholarship Program (PDF).

The ESA is a sneaky piece of legislation known as a “backdoor voucher”– if a state’s constitution prohibits use of public funds for directly paying for private schools, ESA “backdoors” it by circumventing direct payment of public funding to private schools and instead uses the parent as the middleman.

Such is occurring in Arizona via the “Arizona ALEC,” the Goldwater Institute.  As Arizona reporter David Safir notes,

The Goldwater Institute came up with the idea for ESAs as a second workaround (the first is our tuition tax credit law) to make vouchers legal in a state where the constitution prohibits the use of public money for religious instruction. (Did you know over 70% of Arizona’s private schools are religious?) The term of art for this kind of legislation is “backdoor vouchers.” In 2011, Arizona’s Republican-dominated legislature passed the ESAs into law for a limited number of students. In 2013, more students were added, and if a new bill passes this session, half of Arizona’s school aged children will be eligible for the taxpayer-funded private school vouchers. The conservative’s ultimate goal is vouchers for all.

Of course, ASC is available to promote vouchers in Arizona– with the help of none other than Arizona State Superintendent John Huppenthal:

The Alliance for School Choice, a Washington, D.C., agent of the vast privatization/corporate complex, put together a script for a [February 2014] robocall to go out to Arizona parents whose children qualify for the ESAs. Huppenthal lent his voice to the robocall. Actually, he lent more than his voice. He lent the power and authority of his office to the message, making it sound like an official public service announcement. Huppenthal’s call sent interested parents to a website about ESAs created and funded by — get ready for it — the Goldwater Institute. And so the private-to-public-to-private-to-public-to-private cycle that begins and ends with the Goldwater folks comes full circle. [Emphasis added.]

And The Republic adds,

State Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal caught some heat last month for recording a series of robo-calls promoting the ESA program and suggesting parents can use it to send their children to private schools for free.

Huppenthal’s staff worked with school choice lobbyist Sydney Hay to develop the wording for the calls, according to e-mails ProgressNow obtained. Huppenthal went ahead with some wording despite concern from his staff, including over referring families to a Goldwater Institute website for more information.

The calls went out to 48,000 qualifying families, according to the e-mail correspondence.

Pro-privatizing superintendents love vouchers. Louisiana Superintendent John White and his boss, Governor Bobby Jindal, have been pushing them hard in Louisiana– despite a record  of embarrassingly low test-score yield and miserable oversight.

One issue is clear: A goal to fund an “all voucher” system would seriously cripple or kill public education.

In the case of Arizona, where voucher money is debited to parents via voucher bank accounts, there’s the question of the bloated bureaucracy necessary to adequately monitor proper spending of the voucher disbursements.

Whereas Arizona voucher proponents assert that vouchers save money because of a lower voucher disbursement as compared to the cost of having the student attend public schools, not all costs appear to be accounted for– not the least of which is the bureaucracy noted above.

Yet Arizona– already home to a charter school bonanza that nourishes corporate greed– is fast-tracking public school destruction in the form of an expanded voucher program during the 2014 legislative session:

[Arizona’s] Empowerment Scholarship Account program was, at the start of this school year, scheduled to disperse $10.2 million to 761 students. If expanded as proposed, the 3-year-old program could within the next five years apply to more than 28,000 students and strip more than $374 million a year from public and charter schools, based on the current average cost.

The goal is to eventually expand the program to the state’s more than 1 million public and charter schoolchildren. …

The [Arizona] Legislature started the session with six bills proposing to expand ESAs in various ways. Three are still advancing.

House Bill 2150, which passed the House and moves to the Senate, would allow the children of military personnel killed in the line of duty to participate. The bill is scheduled for a public hearing Thursday before the Senate Education Committee.

Senate Bill 1236 and House Bill 2291 are identical bills, which puts them on a fast-track. They each need a committee of the whole and a final vote in their respective chambers and then would be combined and sent directly to Gov. Jan Brewer.

The bills propose to gradually expand who is allowed to participate in the program.

Next school year, the children of police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians could participate, as could siblings of children who already use ESAs.Starting with the 2016-17 school year, children whose family income qualifies them for the federal free or reduced lunch program could participate. Each year after, it raises the qualifying family income by an additional 15 percent until all families qualify.

While the proposed expansion could cost public and charter schools hundreds of millions of dollars each year as parents move children into private schools, it also carries an increased cost to the state due to the funding formula for certain students.

According to legislative staff, expanding the program under HB 2291 or SB 1236 would cost the state an additional $46,100 in fiscal 2016, $3.5 million in fiscal 2017, $7.6 million in fiscal 2018 and $12.5 million in fiscal 2019. [Emphasis added.]

It amazes me how privatizers push for complete privatization– unbridled market force– without conducting any kind of small-scale run-through to see where major problems might arise.

And major problems will arise.

Did we learn nothing from the economic crisis of 2008 regarding the vulnerability of the so-called “free market” to the ever-lurking forces of unbridled greed and high-powered excess?

As to the push for a full-voucher education system in Arizona: What of that disbursement and accountability bureaucracy necessary to adequately handle an all-voucher system? Is there enough money for an all-voucher system– for both vouchers and bureaucracy? Will the Arizona education system bankrupt itself on voucher “choice”? Is it even possible to monitor the quality of education for individual students for such a large-scale voucher program? Who will ensure that students are actually receiving an education? Has no one considered the possibility that some parents might submit beautiful quarterly receipts yet not be educating their children?

And what of the parents who reject vouchers– who actually want a community public school?

Are we to pretend that such individuals do not exist?

Have they no choice?

Consider Milwaukee– a city that has been trying to succeed at vouchers for decades. The Walton-funded University of Arkansas Department of Educational Reform has promoted Milwaukee as evidence of voucher success, but that label only works when viewed through a certain Walton-funded lens.

Milwaukee’s voucher program demonstrates that when offered voucher choice, at least half chose to forego the “scholarship” and leave the voucher school.

Where did they choose to go?

The Milwaukee study in question did not detail exactly where students went once they left the voucher school.

I’m guessing that many returned to their neighborhood public schools.

A neighborhood public school– now there’s a novel idea.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured photo is under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled GNU Free Documentation License.

Malmo, Sweden: “L’enlevement d’Europe” – The Rape of Europa

Sweden is the seventh richest country in the world in terms of GDP per capita and its high standard of living.  It is famous for supporting the Norwegian resistance during World War II; for helping to rescue Danish Jews from deportation to concentration camps; and for its native son, Raoul Wallenberg, who rescued up to 100,000 Hungarian Jews during the Holocaust.

We recognize Sweden as the country that gave us  the incomparable Ingrid Bergman and Greta Garbo, writers Ingmar Bergman and August Strindberg,  IKEA furniture, high-quality steel production, the Volvo, the pop group ABBA, and Pippi Longstocking. 

But Sweden’s latest source of prominence, its third largest city, Malmo, founded c. 1275, is now known as the City to Leave.  Its Jewish population is fleeing, as Malmo has become home to Muslim immigrants, antisemitism and violence, which has earned for Sweden the dubious distinction of Rape Capital of the World.  How is it possible for the Muslims to comprise a mere 6% of Sweden’s population, yet be responsible for 77% of the rapes committed?  According to the Counter Jihad report, one in four Swedish women will be raped, some killed, as sexual assaults increase by 500%.

Now, since President Obama invited 80,000 Muslims into the United States, with a promise of 100,000 per year over the next five years, and studies show that Islamic immigration brings a rise in rates of rape and molestation, there can be no doubt that we will see a corresponding increase in rape crime in America accordingly.

Is rape a fundamental part of Muslim culture?  Egyptian-born Nonie Darwish, in her book,  And Now They Call Me Infidelexplains the Muslim mentality that is formed by their family dynamics and  interaction and by constant dissatisfaction.

Youths may not date, fall in love, or even communicate with the opposite sex.  Women are severely oppressed from childhood, and not allowed to form friendships. A woman is the source of a man’s pride or shame. She is made to suffer ritual female genital mutilation; her physical appearance must be concealed; she is prohibited from living as freely as men; and she must obey strict Shari’a law – to either suffer in a polygamous marriage that encourages jealousy and diminishes her importance, or to become an Islamic slave in a brief marriage – as brief as a few hours. Divorce is the male’s option, as easy as saying “I divorce you.”  Since there is no common property between husband and wife, and his property does not automatically go to the wife after his death, the “one-night stand” is legal under Shari’a law.

There are also a number of taboos and laws that not only undermine a woman’s security and self-respect, but also dominate her relationship to her children and others.  The result is an environment that sets women up against each other, poisoned with distrust, grief, isolation, and financial insecurity.

What better way of defining the exploitation of sexual favors, forced labor or services, slavery or similar practices of servitude of one person (an underage female) by her parent to another adult (called a husband), than by human trafficking – particularly when deception and coercion are used by the parent who transfers parental custody to the stranger, and there is an exchange of payment in return.

Men are also impacted by Shari’a law.  Because his honor is determined by the female’s behavior, he becomes despotic, and may even kill his wife and children to endorse  his dignity.  The men are first raised by their unhappy, demoralized mothers  in a sexually oppressive society, where he is also economically unable to keep up with the older men who can buy any number of liaisons and support as many as four wives. The first-born son is also needed as protection of his mother against her husband’s unjust treatment.  All this leads to interlocking loyalties, fears, and unusual bonding, if any.

Polygamy deprives everyone of the intimacy and security found in a monogamous or faithful marriage. Although the man governs his women, in all other circumstances, he endures indignity, humility, and degradation from all who live within a brutal regime.   With abuse in every part of his life, including the workplace, he is disaffected, angry, ripe for fundamentalism – even eager to give up his life for the promise of heaven and the elusive sexual satisfaction.

The populace is taught to stay in the tribe, to never befriend the outsiders, and to fervently focus on hating Israel and the West, even if they know nothing about those countries or people.  The hate becomes their identity, blaming the West for their culture’s failure.  If their military leadership fails, if life is difficult, the economy bad, they feel less victimized if they can place the blame elsewhere. It’s a simple fact that no one takes responsibility for anything in Islam and everyone blames everyone else.

A polygamous society lacks cohesion and fellowship and is based on distrust, with hatred being at the surface, boiling and ready to explode against the most vulnerable. This is nihilism* – the man’s harming the woman, stealing her humanity and security.  It is what the jihadist hopes to do to the civilization that he has invaded.

And this all leads to an article that came to my attention – students in a biology class at the University of Iowa are being taught that rape is “human nature.”  Regarding criminalsexual assaults as human nature is obviously offensive and dismissive, a way of allowing or even encouraging the behavior to continue.  While certain university professors suggested rape “has an evolutionary origin … genetically developed strategy sustained over generations of human life…a successful reproductive strategy,” it is entirely unacceptable in a civilized society, an act for which the perpetrator must be severely punished.

The sanctioning of rape is being insinuated into our culture through our youth as yet another tentacle of Islamization.  We will not accept cruelty and criminal behavior as human nature.  We have evolved considerably since a code of high morality, ethics, compassion and justice was put into place by the Hebrews during the Bronze/Iron age.  We will not sink to the depths of degradation offered by a culture that, centuries later, brought the antithesis of our society to the world.

What the students should be learning is that not all cultures are civilized, that it is important to realize and nurture our own exceptionalism compared to those that are bent on humanity’s destruction, and that an ideal civilization controls, contains, and rejects the elements of human nature that harm and devalue others – women, for example.  This is one of many of the proverbial slippery slopes, where the liberal thinker accommodates the Islamist, and rejects morality,  the American Constitution, and the future designed for us by our Founding Fathers.

*Ni·hil·ism

1. total rejection of established laws and institutions.

2. anarchy, terrorism, or other revolutionary activity.

3. total and absolute destructiveness, especially toward the world at large and including oneself.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is by Willy von Beckerath titled -“L’enlevement d’Europe” – The Rape of Europa.

Against Libertarian Brutalism by Jeffrey A. Tucker

Will libertarianism be brutalist or humanitarian? Everyone needs to decide.

Why should we favor human liberty over a social order ruled by power? In providing the answer, I would suggest that libertarians can generally be divided into two camps: humanitarians and brutalists.

The humanitarians are drawn to reasons such as the following. Liberty allows peaceful human cooperation. It inspires the creative service of others. It keeps violence at bay. It allows for capital formation and prosperity. It protects human rights of all against invasion. It allows human associations of all sorts to flourish on their own terms. It socializes people with rewards toward getting along rather than tearing each other apart, and leads to a world in which people are valued as ends in themselves rather than fodder in the central plan.

We know all of this from history and experience. These are all great reasons to love liberty.

But they are not the only reasons that people support liberty. There is a segment of the population of self-described libertarians—described here as brutalists—who find all the above rather boring, broad, and excessively humanitarian. To them, what’s impressive about liberty is that it allows people to assert their individual preferences, to form homogeneous tribes, to work out their biases in action, to ostracize people based on “politically incorrect” standards, to hate to their heart’s content so long as no violence is used as a means, to shout down people based on their demographics or political opinions, to be openly racist and sexist, to exclude and isolate and be generally malcontented with modernity, and to reject civil standards of values and etiquette in favor of antisocial norms.

These two impulses are radically different. The first values the social peace that emerges from freedom, while the second values the freedom to reject cooperation in favor of gut-level prejudice. The first wants to reduce the role of power and privilege in the world, while the second wants the freedom to assert power and privilege within the strict confines of private property rights and the freedom to disassociate.

To be sure, liberty does allow both the humanitarian and the brutalist perspective, as implausible as that might seem. Liberty is large and expansive and asserts no particular social end as the one and only way. Within the framework of liberty, there is the freedom to love and to hate. At the same time, they constitute very different ways of looking at the world—one liberal in the classical sense and one illiberal in every sense—and it is good to consider that before you, as a libertarian, find yourself allied with people who are missing the main point of the liberal idea.

Humanitarianism we understand. It seeks the well-being of the human person and the flourishing of society in all its complexity. Libertarian humanitarianism sees the best means to achieve this as the self-ordering social system itself, unimpeded by external controls through the violent means of the State. The goal here is essentially benevolent, and the means by which it is achieved put a premium on social peace, free association, mutually beneficial exchange, the organic development of institutions, and the beauty of life itself.

What is brutalism? The term is mostly associated with an architectural style of the 1950s through the 1970s, one that emphasized large concrete structures unrefined by concerns over style and grace. Inelegance is its main thrust and its primary source of pride. Brutalism heralded the lack of pretense and the raw practicality of the building’s use. The building was supposed to be strong not pretty, aggressive not fussy, imposing and not subtle.

Brutalism in architecture was an affectation, one that emerged from a theory robbed of context. It was a style adopted with conscious precision. It believed it was forcing us to look at unadorned realities, an apparatus barren of distractions, in order to make a didactic point. This point was not only aesthetic but also ethical: It rejected beauty on principle. To beautify is to compromise, distract, and ruin the purity of the cause. It follows that brutalism rejected the need for commercial appeal and discarded issues of presentation and marketing; these issues, in the brutalist framework, shield our eyes from the radical core.

Brutalism asserted that a building should be no more and no less than what it is supposed to be in order to fulfill its function. It asserted the right to be ugly, which is precisely why the style was most popular among governments around the world, and why brutalist forms are today seen as eyesores all over the world.

We look back and wonder where these monstrosities came from, and we are amazed to discover that they were born of a theory that rejected beauty, presentation, and adornment as a matter of principle. The architects imagined that they were showing us something we would otherwise be reluctant to face. You can only really appreciate the results of brutalism, however, if you have already bought into the theory and believe in it. Otherwise, absent the extremist and fundamentalist ideology, the building comes across as terrifying and threatening.

By analogy, what is ideological brutalism? It strips down the theory to its rawest and most fundamental parts and pushes the application of those parts to the foreground. It tests the limits of the idea by tossing out the finesse, the refinements, the grace, the decency, the accoutrements. It cares nothing for the larger cause of civility and the beauty of results. It is only interested in the pure functionality of the parts. It dares anyone to question the overall look and feel of the ideological apparatus, and shouts down people who do so as being insufficiently devoted to the core of the theory, which itself is asserted without context or regard for aesthetics.

Not every argument for raw principle and stripped-down analytics is inherently brutalist; the core truth of brutalism is that we need to reduce in order to see the roots, we need sometimes to face difficult truth, and we need to be shocked and sometimes to shock with seemingly implausible or uncomfortable implications of an idea. Brutalism goes much further: the idea that the argument should stop there and go no further, and to elaborate, qualify, adorn, nuance, admit uncertainty, or broaden beyond gritty assertion amounts to a sell out or a corruption of purity. Brutalism is relentless and unabashed in its refusal to get beyond the most primitive postulates.

Brutalism can appear in many ideological guises. Bolshevism and Nazism are both obvious examples: Class and race become the only metric driving politics to the exclusion of every other consideration. In modern democracy, partisan politics tends toward brutalism insofar as it asserts party control as the only relevant concern. Religious fundamentalism is yet another obvious form.

In the libertarian world, however, brutalism is rooted in the pure theory of the rights of individuals to live their values whatever they may be. The core truth is there and indisputable, but the application is made raw to push a point. Thus do the brutalists assert the right to be racist, the right to be a misogynist, the right to hate Jews or foreigners, the right to ignore civil standards of social engagement, the right to be uncivilized, to be rude and crude. It is all permissible and even meritorious because embracing what is awful can constitute a kind of test. After all, what is liberty if not the right to be a boor?

These kinds of arguments make the libertarian humanitarians deeply uncomfortable since they are narrowly true as regards pure theory but miss the bigger point of human liberty, which is not to make the world more divided and miserable but to enable human flourishing in peace and prosperity. Just as we want architecture to please the eye and reflect the drama and elegance of the human ideal, so too a theory of the social order should provide a framework for a life well lived and communities of association that permit its members to flourish.

The brutalists are technically correct that liberty also protects the right to be a complete jerk and the right to hate, but such impulses do not flow from the long history of the liberal idea. As regards race and sex, for example, the liberation of women and minority populations from arbitrary rule has been a great achievement of this tradition. To continue to assert the right to turn back the clock in your private and commercial life gives an impression of the ideology that is uprooted from this history, as if these victories for human dignity have nothing whatever to do with the ideological needs of today.

Brutalism is more than a stripped-down, antimodern, and gutted version of the original libertarianism. It is also a style of argumentation and an approach to rhetorical engagement. As with architecture, it rejects marketing, the commercial ethos, and the idea of “selling” a worldview. Liberty must be accepted or rejected based entirely on its most reduced form. Thus is it quick to pounce, denounce, and declare victory. It detects compromise everywhere. It loves nothing more than to ferret it out. It has no patience for subtlety of exposition much less the nuances of the circumstances of time and place. It sees only raw truth and clings to it as the one and only truth to the exclusion of all other truth.

Brutalism rejects subtlety and finds no exceptions of circumstance to its universal theory. The theory applies regardless of time, place, or culture. There can be no room for modification or even discovery of new information that might change the way the theory is applied. Brutalism is a closed system of thought in which all relevant information is already known, and the manner in which the theory is applied is presumed to be a given part of the theoretical apparatus. Even difficult areas such as family law, criminal restitution, rights in ideas, liability for trespass, and other areas subject to case-by-case juridical tradition become part of an a priori apparatus that admits no exceptions or emendations.

And because brutalism is the outlying impulse in the libertarian world—young people are no longer interested in this whole approach—it behaves the way we’ve come to expect from seriously marginal groups. Asserting the rights and even the merits of racism and hate, it is already excluded from mainstream conversation about public life. The only people who truly listen to brutalist arguments, which are uncompelling by design, are other libertarians. For that reason, brutalism is driven ever more toward extreme factionalism; attacking the humanitarians for attempting to beautify the message becomes a full-time occupation.

In the course of this factionalism, the brutalists of course assert that they are the only true believers in liberty because only they have the stomach and the brass necessary to take libertarian logic to its most extreme end and deal with the results. But it is not bravery or intellectual rigor at work here. Their idea of libertarianism is reductionist, truncated, unthoughtful, uncolored and uncorrected by the unfolding of human experience, and forgets the larger historical and social context in which liberty lives.

So let’s say you have a town that is taken over by a fundamentalist sect that excludes all peoples not of the faith, forces women into burka-like clothing, imposes a theocratic legal code, and ostracizes gays and lesbians. You might say that everyone is there voluntarily, but, even so, there is no liberalism present in this social arrangement at all. The brutalists will be on the front lines to defend such a microtyranny on grounds of decentralization, rights of property, and the right to discriminate and exclude—completely dismissing the larger picture here that, after all, people’s core aspirations to live a full and free life are being denied on a daily basis.

Further, the brutalist believes that he already knows the results of human liberty, and they often conform to the throne-and-altar impulses of times past. After all, in their view, liberty means the unleashing of all the basest impulses of human nature that they believe the modern state has suppressed: the desire to abide in racial and religious homogeneity, the moral permanency of patriarchy, the revulsion against homosexuality, and so on. What most people regard as modernity’s advances against prejudice, the brutalists regard as imposed exceptions from the long history of humanity’s tribalist and religiously based instincts.

Of course the brutalist as I’ve described him is an ideal type, probably not fully personified in any particular thinker. But the brutalist impulse is everywhere in evidence, especially on social media. It is a tendency of thought with predictable positions and biases. It is a main source for racist, sexist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic strains within the libertarian world—at once denying that this sentence is true while asserting with equal passion the rights of individuals to hold and act on such views. After all, say the brutalists, what is human liberty without the right to behave in ways that put our most precious sensibilities, and even civilization itself, to the test?

It all comes down to the fundamental motivation behind the support of liberty itself. What is its overarching purpose? What is its dominant historical contribution? What is its future? Here the humanitarians are fundamentally at odds with brutalism.

Truly, we should never neglect the core, never shrink from the difficult implications of the pure theory of liberty. At the same time, the story of liberty and its future is not only about the raw assertion of rights but also about grace, aesthetics, beauty, complexity, service to others, community, the gradual emergence of cultural norms, and the spontaneous development of extended orders of commercial and private relationships. Freedom is what gives life to the human imagination and enables the working out of love as it extends from our most benevolent and highest longings.

An ideology robbed of its accoutrements, on the other hand, can become an eyesore, just as with a large concrete monstrosity built decades ago, imposed on an urban landscape, embarrassing to everyone, now only awaiting demolition. Will libertarianism be brutalist or humanitarian? Everyone needs to decide.

20121129_JeffreyTuckeravatar (1)ABOUT JEFFREY A. TUCKER

Jeffrey Tucker is a distinguished fellow at FEE, CEO of the startup Liberty.me, and publisher at Laissez Faire Books. He will be speaking at the FEE summer seminar “Making Innovation Possible: The Role of Economics in Scientific Progress.”

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of FEE and Shutterstock.

WARNING: Food Fetish on Campus

Colleges and universities are embracing “food studies” primarily as another way of pushing leftist beliefs.

In the Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne describes one of the characters at the Custom House who is well suited to government work. He is the Inspector, an epicurean so devoid of imagination, feeling, and soul that he is likened to “the beasts of the field.” His mental capacities are limited to the ability to “recollect the good dinners which it had made no small portion of the happiness of his life to eat.”

I was reminded of that passage as I learned about the latest “studies” endeavor being cooked up on American college campuses: “food studies.”

These days, even in their required classes, students are not likely to get exposure to philosophical concepts like Epicureanism, or to classical authors such as Hawthorne. They’re more apt to take courses that focus on food itself, that tell them essentially, “You are what you eat.”  Food, in other words, carries moral meanings. What you eat and how you eat define you as a moral person, with the new standards of morality aligning with the other lessons of the contemporary campus on race, class, sustainability, animal rights, and gender.

The latest additions have little to do with legitimate intellectual endeavors like agriculture or nutrition science. Instead, food becomes another lens through which to examine oppression, sustainability, and multiculturalism.

A surprising number of universities have gone in this direction. The New School has an undergraduate program in food studies, while several offer master’s level programs: Chatham UniversityNew York UniversityBoston University (a graduate certificate); and New Mexico State University (a graduate-level minor). The Graduate Center of the City University of New York offers an interdisciplinary concentration, and Indiana University even a Ph.D. concentration in Anthropology of Food.

Anthropology is one source of this focus on food, and a legitimate one.  At Emory University the Anthropology Department supervises graduates from the School of Public Health and the Department of Nutrition, and offers a specialization in “Food, Nutrition, and Anthropology.”

At Spelman College, anthropology professor Daryl White has taught a course called “Food and Culture” for twenty years.  It’s particularly popular among International Studies students, says White, because “Food is the universal solvent. You can talk about it when you can’t talk about anything else.”

Undoubtedly, food plays a role in cross-cultural communication. But the sociologist authors of Foodies: Democracy and Distinction in the Gourmet Foodscape (the textbook White uses in his current course) present food as significant in a way that goes well beyond cross-cultural communication, as indicated bysuch chapters as “Eating Authentically” and “The Culinary Other.” They state that “foodies” can appreciate the “peasant cook,” the street vendor, and the master chef. Food studies have become part of the agenda of social justice and multiculturalism, which have come to infiltrate much of the humanities.

Food studies concerns do go beyond food, Professor White acknowledged in an interview in an Atlanta alternative weekly newspaper that ranged into the areas of Southern culture, racism, and Paula Deen. The study of popular culture figures and racism, of course, have long been edging out the traditional subjects on our campuses.

Food studies will now become a minor at Spelman.  It’s an effort White has been spearheading with Kimberley Jackson, who teaches a course on food chemistry, an elective that can fulfill a science requirement for the non-science major.

The effort for a food studies minor began with nine faculty members applying for and receiving a Mellon grant, White told me. After expected approval at the April curriculum committee meeting, courses should be available in the fall semester in several departments, including economics. A biologist and Chinese language expert will jointly offer a course that explores the development of Chinese cuisine, and the role of lactose intolerance. In the English department a course will investigate food imagery in Toni Morrison’s novels.

You can find the mania over food studies in many states, including North Carolina. At UNC-Chapel Hill, students in the Department of Geography can take “Critical Food Studies,” and others can develop interdisciplinary programs that incorporate courses such as “Food in American Culture” provided through the department of American Studies.

Food studies is also a focus of graduate research in Chapel Hill’s English and Comparative Literature Department. Rachel Norman describes her dissertation on Arab-American literature as “focusing on representations of language and food as practices of oral identity.”  Inger S.B. Brodey, associate professor, lists as among the courses she teaches Asian Food Rituals, cross-listed with Asian Studies.  And Jessica Martel’s dissertation is on “Modernist Form and Imperial Food Politics, 1890-1922.”

Food studies has made its way even down to freshman composition.  Apparently responding to market demand, the textbook publisher Bedford is offering Food Matters with a sample syllabus and recommended “resources” for an entire semester devoted to food studies.  Among the resources are the “documentaries” Forks Over Knives (which advocates a low-fat whole-food, plant-based diet) and Super Size Me (about the evils of the fast food industry), and the books, Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal by Eric Schlosser, Barbara Kingsolver’s memoir of her year eating locally, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, and the 1971 bestseller about the environmental impact of meat production, Diet for a Small Planet.

Perhaps for the freshman who did not realize he was signing up for a “food studies” composition class, the model syllabus begins by asking, “Do you eat breakfast?  Is it from a box, your garden, or the university cafeteria?” with more questions until: “Have you ever thought about where your food comes from?” Disarming the critic who might think these critiques are “overblown,” Holly Bauer, the author, who teaches English at UC San Diego, tells the student that the issue is “contested terrain” to explore and write about.

There is not much “contesting” among the essays in the book, however.  All seem to harp on  political themes relating to food: “Doberge Cake after Katrina,” by Amy Cyrex Sins, and “Equality for Animals,” by Peter Singer, Princeton bioethics professor. Bedford also includes an excerpt from Michelle Obama’s book, American Grown: The Story of One White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America, along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Pyramid and Food Plate Nutrition Guidelines.

The prompts for essays convey the idea that eating is fraught with ideological choices. Prompt #1 asks, “What is food?  What is the purpose of food?  What determines what we eat?”  Prompt #2 asks, “What does it mean to eat ethically?” and #3 asks, “What is the future of food?” as it notes the contributors’ concerns with climate change, global hunger, and labor injustice.

Thus, rather than reading examples of exemplary prose and being asked to write about important issues, students are fed a steady stream of polemics and are given loaded topic questions.

To put the primary focus on food, rather than ideas and writing, is to act in the manner of Hawthorne’s Inspector, I think.  A similar mistake in emphasis is evidenced in “Immanuel Kant, Cuisine, Fine Art,”  a paper to be presented at an upcoming conference by Texas Tech University history student David C. Simpson, who describes himself as “. . . researching my Master’s Thesis on the history of cuisine as fine art.”  Shouldn’t the primary focus be on Kant?

To be sure, many of the papers at the Food Studies Association conference in Prato, Italy, where Simpson will present, deal with important topics like food chemistry and health, and perhaps political systems (“Mafia and Italian Food Supply Chain”). Another upcoming conference, that of  the Association for the Study of Food and Society, also offers papers on scientific concerns, alongside such things as “Gender, Race, and Ethnicity” and “Art, Media, and Literary Analyses.”

And, finally, the Food Studies Caucus of the American Studies Association will hold several panels at itsmeeting, mostly on political topics, like “Food, Debt, and the Anti-Capitalist Imagination” and “How the Other Half Eats: Race and Food Reform from the Slaughterhouse to the White House.”

“Food studies” has become an academic growth area, adding to the deterioration of the humanities, and to the advancement of leftist ideologies. No doubt our universities will be producing many more “scholars” investigating all aspects of food: food and race, food and capitalism, food and gender, etc.  But we will have fewer graduates familiar with literary and philosophical masterpieces.  Fewer will be able to produce good writing—or real food.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of Liz West from Boxborough, MA of a food basket. The photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. The use of this image does not in any way that suggests that Liz West endorses the author or your use of the work in this column.

Obamas Send Wrong Messages

Two weeks ago, President Obama launched an initiative called My Brother’s Keeper.

As a part of this initiative, he signed a presidential memorandum establishing the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force, chaired by Assistant to the President and Cabinet Secretary Broderick Johnson. The task force will help determine what public and private efforts are working and how to expand upon them, how the federal government’s own policies and programs can better support these efforts, and how to better involve state and local officials, the private sector, and the philanthropic community in these efforts.

I fail to understand the logic of setting up a yet task force. You would think groups like the NAACP, the National Urban League, the National Council of La Raza would already have “shovel ready” projects that the administration could access immediately.

I can’t help but notice that Dave Steward and Bob Woodson were not invited to participate. Dave Steward, chairman of World Wide Technology in St. Louis, is the largest Black-owned business in the U.S. and has built a $ 6 billion company based on principles that highlight morals and values. He also supports these values and morals with his money in communities throughout the U.S.

Bob Woodson, founder and president of the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise, has a 30-year track record of dealing with troubled youths. He has done a lot of work in the president’s adopted hometown of Chicago.

It is impossible to adequately deal with our youth without incorporating the issue of values and morals. It means telling our kids that there is right and wrong; not saying to them: “Who are we to judge?”

The president said, “…I explained to them (the kids on stage with him) when I was their age, I was a lot like them. I didn’t have a dad in the house. And I was angry about it, even though I didn’t necessarily realize at the time. I made bad choices. I got high without always thinking about the harm that it could do. I didn’t always take school as seriously as I should have. I made excuses. Sometimes I sold myself short.”

Was this not the same president that said a week before in the White House that he supported legalizing marijuana? But, then he tells kids, “I made bad choices. I got high without always thinking about the harm that it could do.” If it was a bad choice and it could cause harm, then why would you want to legalize marijuana? As with the president, I am extremely confused and concerned with Ms. Obama’s fascination with people who promote values that are antithetical to creating a healthy environment for young girls to flourish in. Beyoncé is the personification of this.

Two years ago, Ms. Obama was asked by People magazine who she would choose to be other than herself. She replied with, “Gosh, if I had some gift, I’d be Beyoncé.” She and Beyoncé are purported to be very close personal friends, but is Beyoncé the person you really want your daughter to immolate?

Allow me to share a few lyrics from Beyoncé’s most recent CD, Drunk in Love: “I’ve been drinking; I get filthy when that liquor get into me; I’ve been thinking; Why can’t I keep my fingers off it, baby?”

On her song Bow Down: “I know when you were little girls; You dreamt of being in my world; Don’t forget it; Respect that, Bow down b—-es; Don’t get it twisted this is my sh-t, bow down b—-es.”

There is more. On the song Partition: Oh he so horny, he want to f—k; He bucked all my buttons, he ripped my blouse; He Monica Lewinski all on my gown.”

And the First Lady wants to be like that?

Beyoncé has become the Howard Stern of music – vulgar simply for the sake of shocking the public. Her concerts boarder on pornography Yet, Ms. Obama had no problem taking her two daughters (Malia, 13, and Sasha, 10 at the time) to watch Beyoncé perform two years ago in Atlantic City.

Here is a Twitter exchange between Beyoncé and Michelle Obama before the concert: “Michelle, thank you so much for every single thing that you do for us. I am proud to have my daughter grow up in a world where she has people like you to look up to.” Obama’s response on twitter: “@Beyoncé Thank you for the beautiful letter and for being a role model who kids everywhere can look up to. –mo.

The president and his wife are sending out conflicting messages. Kids need to be told and shown how to behave. You can’t support legalizing marijuana and then tell kids not to use it. You can’t tell little girls to carry yourself like a young lady and then tell them you want to be Beyoncé.

That’s not Drunk in Love. You have to be plain drunk to think that Beyonce should be anybody’s role model.

“Son of GOD” – What a Movie! What a terrific Turn-out!

I cannot explain to you the feeling that went through my entire body last night at the Cobb Palm Beach Gardens Theater, while watching the phenomenal blockbuster, “Son of GOD”. Not only did we weather the “Tornado Warnings” during the afternoon to get there and not only was the movie a very accurate depiction of what truly happened in the life of our Lord & Savior – but, to watch a movie like this – a day after Ash Wednesday – with a theater full of Catholic friends – is difficult to put a price tag on an experience like this. We need to do this more often.

I laid in bed all night, thinking about the movie; thinking about all our wonderful friends who showed up; thinking about the “100” year-old Catherine Hughes, who sat in her wheelchair in front of me; thinking of our youngest camper, Marlee (8 years old), who sat next to me (while covering her eyes during the rougher parts of the scourging); and I am still reliving the beautiful prayer that Father Richard Champigny – the 75 year-old humble Carmelite priest – opened up the evening with. Yes, a beautiful, heartfelt prayer in a public theater. We had the entire theater to ourselves & that was awesome! It should be like that everywhere we go. Thank you, Father Richard.

And, friends, if Christian on a Mission had the money, we would do this “Bold for Our Faith Movie Night” every single time a wonderful Christian movie like this comes out. Heck, we should show Christian movies like “Son of GOD” at our churches every Sunday – we will pack the pews! And, nobody will leave right after Communion. They will wait until the end of the movie!! And, the movie “Noah”, is on deck & coming soon to a “Catholic Theater” near you…Can we do this one more time? I will try my hardest to do this all over again. Stay tuned…Just pray it doesn’t rain for 40 days & 40 nights when this one comes out…and, no woodpeckers on the ark, please.

Well, last night, the Catholics came from everywhere. From “18” different parishes (not including some of our “snow birds” from Ohio, New York, New Jersey, etc,). But, nobody traveled as far as our beloved “100” year-old Catherine Hughes – who came up all the way from Deerfield Beach with her beloved mom, Dolores (President of the CCW). And, they drove up in torrential rain, wicked thunderstorms and tornado warnings. Needless to say, Jesus was right there in the back seat with Catherine & Dolores, calming the storms as they headed north on I-95. They came up early (at 4:30 pm, during the height of the storm), to get a bite to eat. Friends: If that doesn’t motivate you to get more active and “step out of the boat” for your Faith, I don’t know what will…I love those two beloved ladies as well as the countless ladies from the CCW who showed up last night, as they filled the entire theater with their love and tenderness.

And, not too far behind them was our two beloved Carmelite priests – Father Richard Champigny & the retired Father Rommaeus Tooney. They drove all the way up from St. Jude in Boca – and yes, during the torrential storms as well. Nothing but dedication and a love for our Lord. I think it was only appropriate that we had those wicked storm warnings leading up to a Christian movie like this because Satan tried his hardest in keeping all of us from attending – while Jesus simply walked on water and calmed the storms for us, just in time for the majority of us to drive safely to the theater. When we keep our eyes focused on Jesus and not lose sight of Him, He will bring us to calmer waters, greener pastures and Catholic Theaters.

And, let’s not forget our “Michelangelo of the Diocese”, Father Harold Buckley, whose latest & greatest sculpture, The Descent”, graces our beautiful grounds at our beloved Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Cemetery. Yes, soon to turn “89” (in April – the same age that Michelangelo retired from his prolific art career), this Brooklyn Renaissance Man showed up with the ever-smiling, beloved Ken Reynolds, as his Cursillista “groupers” greeted Father Buckley as if he had co-written “Son of GOD” with Roma Downey & Mark Burnett. “The Buck Stops Here” is how I always greet Father Buck and just to watch him walk ever-so-gingerly to the box office with his trusty old cane, made my night. What a gem we have in Father Buckley. Folks: Love him while we still have him. They don’t make them like Father Buckley anymore. I love the man dearly. GOD Bless him.

Friends: It would take me forever to thank everybody that came out to “Son of GOD” last night, as we had an incredible representation from our beloved Diocese. From Bishop Barbarito’s Executive Secretary, Annette Russell & her beloved mom (the last two to leave the shopping center with me); to our beloved Chancellor, Lorraine Sabatella & her husband, Joe; to Birthline/Lifeline’s coordinator, Mary Rodriguez & her husband, Jose; to countless ministry leaders, sacristans, Pro-Lifers, Deacon John Beaudoin, Deacon Greg Horton, My Main Man, Barry Hallett, and one of the cutest & most serious altar servers we have in our Diocese – Jordan Ross (11 year-old from St. Patrick). Sitting next to me on my left was Jane McGann – another gem in our Diocese. What a humbling honor to hold her hand during the more excruciating parts of the Passion. All told, we came from “18” different parishes – all to see one thing:

THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD – The Life & Times of Our Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ.

For those who could not make it out last night for this “Special Event”, we prayed for you and hope you can make it out to see this wonderful film. You did miss one special night, but there will be more to come. This film was made very purposefully, very articulately and with terrific cinematography. The lighting was exceptional. The acting, tremendous. The story line, right on target. The lead actor, superb. The main character, perfect.

How does one portray a perfect character like Jesus of Nazareth? How does one try to imitate everything that He did? How does one become closer to Jesus and His teachings? For starters, going to a movie like this in a huge group of “180” Catholics is a pretty good start. And, going a day after Ash Wednesday truly motivates one to fast, pray & give it all up for the One who died for us. I only wish we could have attended this incredible movie on Ash Wednesday, itself, as I can just see the theater managers, Susie & Harry, watching 180 Catholics walking into their lobby with ashes on our foreheads in the shape of a cross. That was my initial idea, but, too many people were at church that evening receiving their ashes. That would have been “bold”, though…”bold for our faith”.

In closing, on behalf of our non-profit ministry, Christian on a Mission – I want to say Thank You to everybody who came out last night to watch “Son of GOD”. I thank the numerous people who sent beautiful e-mails & thank you messages about our event last night. This was our “6th Christian Movie Night” over the past few years as I try to do these events because it serves to bring all of our parishes “Two-Gether” as One Body in Christ – and that is my ultimate mission with our ministry. We have “266,882” parishioners in our “53” Catholic parishes in our Diocese and my ultimate goal is to one day be able to meet each and every one of them through the countless events that we run in our beloved Diocese.

Now, tell me it isn’t great to be Catholic?

Where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation

Many Democrats wonder what happened to their party since the days of President Grover Cleveland. Cleveland was the leader of the pro-business Bourbon Democrats who opposed high tariffs, Free Silver, inflation, imperialism, and subsidies to business, farmers, or veterans. His crusade for political reform and fiscal conservatism made him an icon for American conservatives of the era. Cleveland won praise for his honesty, self-reliance, integrity, and commitment to the principles of classical liberalism. He relentlessly fought political corruption, patronage and bossism. Indeed, as a reformer his prestige was so strong that the like-minded wing of the Republican Party, called “Mugwumps“, joined with him.

Many have written about the growing number of Americans who are dependent on the government for their livelihood.

The growth of government programs since Cleveland including FDR’s “New Deal”, President Johnson’s “Great Society” and President Obama’s Affordable Care Act are in the news of late. The Great Society’s programs expanded under the administrations of Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. Presidents Clinton, G.W. Bush and Obama have added to the size and scope of government.

Perhaps it is appropriate to revisit how government expansion, taken to its ultimate end, impacts an entire society.

Leon_trotsky

Leon Trotsky

In November, 2009  wrote a column titled “The Evil of Leon Trotsky Revisited“. Ilya’s column has relevance today. Here it is for your edification:

Two of Leon Trotsky’s best-known quotes are his statement that “Where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation” (made famous, especially among libertarians, in part because it was quoted by Hayek in The Road to Serfdom), and the very next sentence in the same paragraph: “The old principle: who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced with a new one: who does not obey shall not eat.” My GMU colleague Bryan Caplan helpfully provides the context of these quotes, from Trotsky’s 1936 book, The Revolution Betrayed:

During these years [since Stalin took power in the USSR] hundreds of Oppositionists, both Russian and foreign, have been shot, or have died of hunger strikes, or have resorted to suicide. Within the last twelve years, the authorities have scores of times announced to the world the final rooting out of the opposition. But during the “purgations” in the last month of 1935 and the first half of 1936, hundreds of thousands of members of the [Communist] party were again expelled, among them several tens of thousands of “Trotskyists.” The most active were immediately arrested and thrown into prisons and concentration camps. As to the rest, Stalin, through Pravda, openly advised the local organs not to give them work. In a country where the sole employer is the state, this means death by slow starvation. The old principle: who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced with a new one: who does not obey shall not eat.

Bryan points out that this context doesn’t reflect well on a man who is still admired by many leftists and even a few ex-leftist conservatives:

Worth noticing: While Trotsky meant what libertarians think he meant, the man’s sheer evil still shines through. He doesn’t mind if the socialist state starves human beings. He was delighted to wield this power when ran the Red Army. No, Trotsky is outraged because the Soviet Union is turning its totalitarian might upon fellow Communists. Was there ever a better time to snark that “Those who live by the sword shall die by the sword”?

As I explained in this series of posts, Trotsky was a brutal mass murderer who objected to political repression only when it targeted his fellow communists. He also opposed Stalin in part because he thought Stalin wasn’t repressive enough. Any residual admiration for Trotsky is sorely misplaced.

Nonetheless, the translation of The Revolution Betrayed quoted by Bryan seems to be less damning than the wording quoted by Hayek. In Hayek’s version, Trotsky is quoted as writing that “Where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation” (emphasis added). Since Trotsky of course favored an economic system where the state is the sole employer, this version of the quote implies that he also favored the inevitable “slow starvation” of oppositionists. By contrast, the translation linked by Bryan states that “Where the sole employer is the State, this [referring to Stalin’s policy of denying employment to oppositionists] means death by slow starvation.” The translation quoted by Bryan doesn’t seem to say that opposition means death by starvation in any society where the state is the sole employer, but only if that state is governed by Stalin’s policy of denying work to “oppositionists.” And, as we can see later in the same chapter, Trotsky did not propose to abolish the government’s monopoly over employment, but merely to replace the Stalinist “bureaucratic” class with a different set of economic central planners. The latter might potentially have a more liberal policy on employing oppositionists. Which version is correct? The only way to tell is to check the original Russian text of The Revolution Betrayed. If anyone can find it online, please let me know and I would be happy to do the checking myself.

Even the more charitable version of this passage still doesn’t paint Trotsky in a flattering light. After all, as Bryan notes, the only “oppositionists” whose right to dissent Trotsky wanted to protect were communists who disagreed with Stalin’s party line. Towards the end of the same chapter of The Revolution Betrayed, Trotsky calls for “a revival of freedom of Soviet parties, beginning with the party of Bolsheviks.” Non-Soviet (i.e. – non-communist) parties need not apply. He had no objection to the “slow starvation” (or even outright execution) of non-communist oppositionists, including even non-communist socialists. Indeed, when he was still in power, Trotsky often ordered such starvation and execution of political opponents himself.

UPDATE: I have found the Russian text of The Revolution Betrayed online here. In my judgment as a native speaker of the language, the Russian version is closer to the translation cited by Bryan than the one used by Hayek. Here is the original Russian text of the relevant sentence:

В стране, где единственным работодателем является государство, эта мера означает медленную голодную
смерть. Старый принцип: кто не работает, тот не ест, заменен новым: кто не повинуется, тот не ест.

Here’s my own translation:

In a country where the state is the sole employer, this policy [referring to Stalin’s policy] means a slow death by starvation [for oppositionists]. The old principle: who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced with a new one: who does not obey shall not eat.

The key Russian phrase “эта мера” literally means “this measure.”

UPDATE #2: Some commenters on this and previous posts about Trotsky ask whether anyone really admires Trotsky anymore. In reality, quite a few modern leftists still do. Christopher Hitchens (see here and here) is one example. As Clive James points out, Trotsky “lived on for decades as the unassailable hero of aesthetically minded progressives who wished to persuade themselves that there could be a vegetarian version of communism.”

Black conservative leaders: NRA created to protect freed slaves

A year ago Black conservative leaders discussed how the NRA was created to protect freed slaves. These Black conservative leaders discuss the reason the NRA was founded and how gun control is an effort to control people. This is the full version of that discussion:

[youtube]http://youtu.be/jKMi023Ofro[/youtube]

 

The Center for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE) hosted a group of prominent figures from the African American community at 9:45 a.m. on Friday, February 22nd [2013] at the National Press Club to speak out against gun control legislation currently being considered on Capitol Hill.

CURE is the largest black conservative think tank in the nation and is headquartered in Washington, D.C.

CURE organized the news conference in response to concerns shared by black conservatives that the Senate proposed laws will restrict their ability to defend themselves, their property and their families. They are also concerned that the proposed gun control legislation puts too much power in the hands of politicians.

“I believe that it is our duty to stand together and challenge the proposals currently on the table in the Senate, which invoke painful memories of Jim Crow laws and black codes,” said CURE president and founder, Star Parker. “Black history is rife with government demands for background checks in order to qualify for constitutional rights. All Americans should be concerned.”

Star Parker, a nationally syndicated columnist and other noted thought leaders, authors and speakers will make the case against the type of gun control measures President Obama and his liberal allies are proposing. While the group believes that Sandy Hook was a national tragedy, they oppose its use as an opportunity to advance government control and strip any American citizens of their constitutional rights. In the middle of Black History Month, CURE is calling for a serious national dialogue about the impact of gun control on the black community.

“We want to inform United States senators that we will be notifying urban pastors, business leaders and other black voters of their legislators’ position on the Second Amendment—especially blue senators in red states currently up for re-election.” The news conference is to rally behind the tradition of former slave and great American orator Frederick Douglass who said, “A man’s rights rest in three boxes: the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge box.”

DAFR fights for the inalienable firearms rights of responsible disabled Americans. Disabled Americans have unique needs when exercising their 2nd Amendment rights. The mission of DAFR is intertwined within five basic areas of focus.

These areas consist of:

1. The introduction of firearms for self-defense to disabled Americans.
2. Shooting sports program and organized competition for disabled Americans and wounded veterans.
3. Oversee firearms legislation and research their impact on Americans with disabilities.
4. Offer assistance to responsible disabled Americans in order to exercise their 2nd Amendment right.
5. Educating the public and elected officials about how disabled American firearms owners have unique needs that must be met when exercising their 2nd Amendment right.

We have also become concerned with recent legislation that is proposed throughout the United States in reaction to the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut. With that, our organization has taken a clear stand on various bills, public acts and proposed laws that we deem would be disadvantageous to responsible disabled firearms owners. DAFR intends to shed light on the fact that many Disabled Americans can only use certain types of firearms such as the highly adaptable AR 15 rifle platform. A ban or other serious restrictions on the AR 15 rifle as well as certain other firearms will have an adverse effect on the rights of thousands of disabled Americans.

RELATED LINKS:

http://www.dafr.org

http://www.facebook.com/DAFRUSA

http://www.twitter.com/DAFRUSA

Disabled Americans for Firearms Rights: http://www.dafr.org.