Get Rid of the Filibuster?

I checked in on Jerry Coyne’s blog and found him asking, “Should the filibuster process die in the U.S. Senate?” Most of his fans say yes. So it got me thinking what bills would have been passed over the last couple of decades without the filibuster. I found this page from the Center for American Progress, a left wing think tank. I’m not interested in the commentary, but I did find it interesting to see what bills have been stopped with the filibuster. Since those on the Left seem to be calling for its eradication, consider what President Bush could have got pushed through without it:

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Posted in Politics | Tagged | 3 Comments

The Woke’s True Enemies

I’d like to return to the review of Robin DiAngelo’s “White Fragility” book.  There is one paragraph in that review which probably the most important.  It is…….

Much of “White Fragility” is dedicated to pulling back the veil on these so-called pillars of whiteness: assumptions that prop up racist beliefs without our realizing it. Such ideologies include individualism, or the distinctly white-American dream that one writes one’s own destiny, and objectivity, the confidence that one can free oneself entirely from bias.

Wow.  So you see, the real problem here is “individualism” and “objectivity.”  But why is it that the Woke have such a problem with these concepts?  One possibility is that the Woke understand that individualism and objectivity thwart their efforts to control other people and acquire power.

Take individualism.  Ignore the strawman about each of us writing our own destiny.  The truth is not that extreme.  The truth claim behind individualism is simply that each of us should strive for as much autonomy as possible since our choices will have profound effects on our destiny.  The beliefs we hold and the actions we initiate (or fail to initiate) are powerful drivers as far as our destiny is considered.   Yes, we can be victims of circumstances to one extent or another, but the story does not end there.  We all play a very important role in our own destiny. We are actors, not just acted upon.   

The opposite of individualism is collectivism.  This is the approach that encourages group think, a hive mentality, and most importantly, dependency.  In a collectivist system, you do not “earn” your way.  You get what is given to you because what you get depends entirely on the good will of others.  And that is what attracts the Woke.  If you are in a state of dependency, you are being controlled by others.  Which is why Woke activists would have you eschew individualism and embrace dependency…..on them.  Your destiny is what they decide it to be.

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Posted in Social Justice, white fragility | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Science and the Resurrection Belief are Not Incompatible

A common talking point among the New Atheists is the assertion that the resurrection of Jesus contradicts science and thus must be wrong. Yet this argument is seriously misguided, as it depends on a faulty understanding of both science and Christianity.

If you want science to have a say on the resurrection, then you need to a) consider what Christians actually believe and b) show how science can address it through experimentation.

As for a), Christians believe Jesus was God incarnate and that his death/resurrection were a miraculous confirmation of the salvation work that took place on the cross. In other words, the theology clearly makes sense of the resurrection as a one-time event that is a promise for our resurrection at the end of history. Nothing in Christian theology would have us predict God would continually incarnate and resurrect throughout human history.

Once we recognize the theological dimension of the resurrection, it becomes clear that science cannot address the actual Christian belief. For how could you possibly test this one-time divine intervention with an experiment?

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Posted in Christianity, Resurrection, Science | Tagged , , | 29 Comments

AOC: A Surge of Apophenia

Congresswoman AOC (a huge social justice advocate) recently complained about the term ‘border surge’ and said, “Anyone who is using the term surge around you consciously is trying to invoke a militaristic frame.”  She then went on to link this to…..surprise!…….white supremacy.

The problem for AOC is that some of us know how to use a dictionary.  The definition of surge is:

a sudden powerful forward or upward movement, especially by a crowd or by a natural force such as the waves or tide.

As you can see, there is nothing inherently militaristic about the term surge.  It simply means a forward or upward movement that has commonly been applied to crowds or natural forces.

The second problem for AOC is that some of us know how to use Google.

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Posted in apophenia, Ocasio-Cortez, Social Justice | Tagged , , | 13 Comments

Celebrating Deception

I have not checked in on Richard Dawkins twitter account for some time so I decided to take a look.  One of the articles he shared with his fans recently is a Guardian article by Jonathan Freedland entitled, “Joe Biden is giving left parties the world over a masterclass in how to use power.”  It made sense that Dawkins would publicize this article given that atheistic principles do seem to boil down to “the ends justify the means.”  We’ve seen it again and again.  Thus, one could understand how Dawkins would be interested in “a masterclass in how to use power.”

Sure enough, when you read the Freedland opinion piece, it is essentially a celebration of deception.  Freedland acknowledges the deceptive nature of President Biden’s campaign: “He ran as a moderate but is governing as a transforming radical. That’s not a paradox – it’s a winning method.”  Of course, the Guardian could have written that subtitle, meaning they are the ones celebrating and applauding deception, but it does reflect the essence of Freedland’s article.  He wrote:

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Posted in atheism, atheist activism, Richard Dawkins | Tagged , , | 21 Comments

A Tale of Two Shootings

On March 16th, a series of shootings occurred at various Atlanta massage parlors that seemed to excite social justice atheists Hemant Mehta and PZ Myers.  I got this impression because both internet activists found themselves blogging about this numerous times after it occurred. Why would that be?

The next day, Mehta makes it clear with the title of his first blog entry:

The Spa Shooting Suspect Was a Born Again Baptist Who Was “Big into Religion”

Ah, that makes sense. The Friendly Atheist is an anti-Christian hate site that regularly posts stories that try to put Christians in a bad light. So it would make sense that Mehta would want give much attention to this story.

Thus, later, the same day, Mehta posted:

How Will Pastors Grapple with the Georgia Spa Shooter’s Baptist Faith?

A couple days later, he threw some more red meat to the anti-Christian haters who regularly post there:

Georgia Spa Shooter Was a Patient at an Evangelical “Sex Addiction” Clinic

He added yet another one the next day (March 20):

Georgia Shooter’s Church Will Kick Him Out Since He Clearly Didn’t Accept Jesus

Then he goes silent. 

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Posted in Hypocrisy, Social Justice, social justice atheism | Tagged , , | 16 Comments

More Egg On PZ Myers’ Face

Ol’ Mushbrain Myers does it again:

I’ve already heard the joke that the pandemic must be over, because we’re back to our regular routine of frequent mass shootings. They’re wrong. The pandemic is still ongoing, and during the latest insane murder spree in Boulder, some of the victims were shot while waiting in line for vaccinations.

All we know is that ten people are dead, that some kind of long gun was used by the scumbag, and that a bleeding person in cuffs was later walked out of the store by the police. Oh, and he was a white man, but there is absolutely no surprise in that.

LOL! And once again, Woke ideology causes its advocates to speak like idiots.

Posted in pz myers, social justice atheism | 9 Comments

Hating on Christians

Atheist PZ Myers posted a blog entry entitled, “You will know they are Christians by their flexible morality.”  He writes:

A wealthy, well-connected real estate agent in the Ozarks decided to have her mother-in-law murdered……What’s interesting about it is the woman’s justification. 

And then quotes an article:

According to a probable cause statement, it all began when Bauman became convinced that her 74-year-old former mother-in-law was causing a strain in her relationship with her daughters. She and her ex had divorced in 2018, and she worried he and his mother might try to get full custody of the girls.

On March 1, she confided in an unidentified woman and asked for help finding “somebody to get rid of her.” Pressed about whether she was serious, Bauman said she “knew it was wrong as a Christian, but she would go to church and ask for forgiveness after it was done.”

Myers then comments:

Christian morality: the world’s greatest get-out-of-jail-free card. Everything is permissible as long as you ask Jesus to forgive you after the vile deed is done.

The same day, atheist activist Hemant Mehta posted a blog entry entitled, “Christian Realtor Arrested in Murder Plot Said She’d Just Ask God to Forgive Her.”  Mehta comments as follows:

That’s the entire problem with the Jesus story, isn’t it? If you think you can be forgiven for anything, it gives you carte blanche to do anything you want, no matter how heinous it might be. Those of us in the reality-based world know that forgiveness only comes from actual repentance — and acceptance of that from the other side. There’s no guaranteed forgiveness for being a horrible person.

There are several points worth noting.

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Posted in Christianity, christophobia, social justice atheism | Tagged , , | 20 Comments

And That’s Why They Are Known as Snowflakes

Another professor blows the whistle on critical race “theory”

He’s soft-spoken, and obviously nervous, yet his ability to use reason is terrifying the social justice students on campus:

Senior Josephine Mercado, President, and founder of UVM Sisters of Color Started the petition. Social justice work is not a priority for UVM SOC, Mercado said, but as her concern for the safety of her sisters grew as she continued watching Kindsvatter’s video, so did her motivation to act.

Safety of her sisters? Safety from what? This is nonsensical gibberish.

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Posted in academia, Social Justice | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Secular Zealotry

Let me quote from a recent article from The Atlantic that wisely notes, “As religious faith has declined, ideological intensity has risen.” 

“if secularists hoped that declining religiosity would make for more rational politics, drained of faith’s inflaming passions, they are likely disappointed. As Christianity’s hold, in particular, has weakened, ideological intensity and fragmentation have risen. American faith, it turns out, is as fervent as ever; it’s just that what was once religious belief has now been channeled into political belief. Political debates over what America is supposed to mean have taken on the character of theological disputations. This is what religion without religion looks like.”

and

“the notion that all deeply felt conviction is sublimated religion is not new. Abraham Kuyper, a theologian who served as the prime minister of the Netherlands at the dawn of the 20th century, when the nation was in the early throes of secularization, argued that all strongly held ideologies were effectively faith-based, and that no human being could survive long without some ultimate loyalty. If that loyalty didn’t derive from traditional religion, it would find expression through secular commitments, such as nationalism, socialism, or liberalism. The political theorist Samuel Goldman calls this “the law of the conservation of religion”: In any given society, there is a relatively constant and finite supply of religious conviction. What varies is how and where it is expressed.”

and

“Religion, in part, is about distancing yourself from the temporal world, with all its imperfection. At its best, religion confers relief by withholding final judgments until another time—perhaps until eternity. The new secular religions unleash dissatisfaction not toward the possibilities of divine grace or justice but toward one’s fellow citizens, who become embodiments of sin—“deplorables” or “enemies of the state.””

and

“No wonder the newly ascendant American ideologies, having to fill the vacuum where religion once was, are so divisive. They are meant to be divisive. On the left, the “woke” take religious notions such as original sin, atonement, ritual, and excommunication and repurpose them for secular ends. Adherents of wokeism see themselves as challenging the long-dominant narrative that emphasized the exceptionalism of the nation’s founding. Whereas religion sees the promised land as being above, in God’s kingdom, the utopian left sees it as being ahead, in the realization of a just society here on Earth.”

I don’t have time to comment now, but, for me, these all point toward the truth of Christianity.

Posted in Politics, postchristian world, Religion, Secularism | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments