Sunday, October 31, 2010

STOP!!! or SLOW DOWN!!!?

It's a good rule of thumb, I think anyway, when everything you are doing only makes the situation worse... just STOP! This coming Tuesday America will, Lord willing, be doing just that. Still, we can only hope that our message will not bear itself out in the final analysis to only being "SLOW DOWN!!!". My hope is that it will be the first installment of "TURN AROUND!!!". If it is to be the latter of the two, then decades of persistent fervor like we've seen this election will have to be the mainstay. The luxury of living our lives paying scant attention to scheming socialists posing as America loving politicians has gone the way of a robust economy, hope, and decency. Does America have the stomach for it? Do those who breath today's air have the will to protect from the ravages of their demands for security those whom have yet to take a breath? The answer to that question will not be decided Tuesday, or in 2012 for that matter. It will be ongoing in answer as it has been. Man has always possessed the desire that others do his will, and liberty. The coming decade will perhaps give way to more insight into which of these two desires is the stronger, but if history has anything to say about it, even recent history, my pessimistic guess is that the message of this election will ultimately be "slow down, you move to fast". Time will tell.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Is Man Basically Good?

Is man basically good? If he were then:
  1. Gun control laws would work, but would be unnecessary.

  2. Welfare would work, but would be unnecessary.

  3. Socialism would be the norm, and it would work.

  4. Separated governmental powers would be pointless.

  5. The military would be unnecessary.

  6. The IRS would be unnecessary.

  7. Deficits would be nonexistent.

  8. Unions would be unnecessary and nonexistent.

  9. A large police force would be unnecessary.

  10. The religion of Environmentalism would be unnecessary.

  11. Criminal rehabilitation would be unnecessary, but if it were necessary, it would work.

  12. Government would only consume a pittance of man's productivity, for it would be cheap; perhaps as cheap as the price of a benevolent dictator and his staff who would earn no more than their fellow man.

  13. Genocide, mass murder, the holocausts, and terrorism would be meaningless words.

  14. Democrat party policies would, for the most part, be good policies.

  15. He would be living in Utopia.
In fact, if man were basically good, he could not be deceived into believing that his current existence, complete with crime, scandal, oppression, deceit, prisons and big government to control his fellow human beings, is the result of the cumulative results of billions of other beings who are basically good.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Juan Williams

Here is a Victor Davis Hanson article that I think does a wonderful job of laying out the blatant hypocrisy in the firing of Juan Williams. Here are its points:
  1. for NPR to prove that it is even-handed in censuring controversial speech it would long ago have had to fire reporter Nina Totenberg for a long history of venomous partisan slurs (e.g., hoping Sen. Jesse Helms and his grandkids might contract AIDS).
  2. NPR CEO Vivian Schiller herself slanders Williams by suggesting that he talk with “his psychiatrist”—
  3. intolerant hard-driving Fox News has no problem with liberal Williams working for NPR; Fox knows its viewers don’t care whether liberal Williams works at a liberal network; NPR fears mightily that its intolerant audience can’t stand anyone who is associated with Fox?
  4. CAIR, the Islamic advocacy group, pressures NPR on Williams’s remarks, but gives a lifetime career achievement award to the anti-Semite Helen Thomas, who calls for the destruction of Israel by having the Jews “get the hell out of Palestine”
  5. Note the silence of the NAACP, which is usually the first to speak out when some African-Americans are deemed railroaded. By its present vote here, the organization simply gives a green light to go after African-Americans tagged not entirely liberal
  6. They apparently believe that society is inherently reactionary (family, church, community, government, etc.) and so they are not biased by openly advocating liberal positions as “balance.”

Hat Tip Geeeeez

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Epithets Galore

The proverbial cow being birthed in the halls of academia and the media elite over the German Chancellor's words "multiculturalism has failed, has utterly failed" will undoubtedly unleash an increased spewing of epithets. Not the epithets that we are use to seeing swished away by the tail of the mama cow of political correctness mind you. No, I'm talking about the epithets that are as necessary to the survival of this cow as the hate that courses her udders is to the intelligentsia and their clone wannabes that suck there. These epithets are aimed at mostly middle-class conservatives, the most popular of which is either "bigot"--a favorite-- or some other word with the suffix "phobe" attached.

The sad thing about this however is that the PC crowd was at one time correct in their disdain for epithets. This correctness was once drawn from plain old civility, respect, and the deference to human dignity. I guess there is a price to pay for relegating all of humanity to the meaninglessness of pond scum, even if the ones relegating refuse to see themselves, and their corralled ideas, in that light.

Soldiers develop inhuman names for their enemies so that it is easier to kill them. Similarly, the epithets being hurled from on high today make it easier to ignore dissent. These epithets keep opposing ideas and those who hold them pigeonholed as immoral; the ever changing morality of which is drawn from some vacuum somewhere that evidently only the "intelligent" can tap. Better to pigeonhole, I guess, than to defend your argument, or to condescend to the light of critique and reason, or worse yet, to humbly consider the possibility of being wrong.

Things never change, it seems, no matter how smart we are or how much we think we know. Man is ever repeating his errors and proving the wickedness of his heart. What an amazing sight here though: to watch the closed minded who claim to be the most open minded among the peoples; the self-righteous loathers of the self-righteous; the ideologue detesting doctrinaires, glaringly morph into the very thing they so hate.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Porn Nation

Northfield Publishing, Chicag0 IL, 2008

America is no longer a nation within which pornography is a seedy industry relegated to the back streets of her cities. It is not even a nation within which pornography is a peripheral kind of entertainment, available for those who want to occasionally stop and take a peek. No, in the words of Michael Leahy (lay- hee), America, is a Porn Nation.

This book is a quick read and well worth a few hours of investment, especially for parents and pastors. It is divided into three parts.

Part-One is basically a brief auto-biography of Leahy's life. He sets the stage in early childhood and then discusses his fist exposure to porn as he was shown a topless woman on the back of a playing card by some peers in his Christian school. He continues his story as it relates to pornography and his increasingly promiscuous lifestyle as he descends, and then spirals out of control. This part of the book reads like a gripping novel that ends in sorrow as Leahy finally looses his family. But it really doesn't end there. Part one sets the table for part two and three before he completes his story at the end.

Part-Two proves to be the meat of the book. Leahy begins this part with a chapter entitled "The Perfect Storm". Here Leahy describes three societal storm fronts of pornographic deprivation now converging on America. They are: The Hypersexual Media, Enabling Technologies, and Sociosexual Pathologies. Leahy looks at the convergence of these three fronts as the desensitizing effects of pornography take an increasing toll on the hearts and minds of society.

To understand Leahy's forecasts, it helps to understand his definition of pornography which is anything that is intended to arouse. Although Leahy's threshold for pornographic is different than current cultural standards, Leahy makes the case that this difference is not based on an objective line, but rather is evidence of a culture's deteriorating standards. This is most evident in TV programing designed to sell advertising, and in advertising itself. The result is an increasingly sexualized society which paves the way for another more insidious threat that has crept in.

To be sure, while the old-line pornography industry, with its seedy venues and residual stigmas, does still exist. This older image of the industry also aids the new industry by creating in the minds of most the illusion that it remains a "dirty old man" kind of business located down town. Yet, the new and real marketplace for the this thriving trade has become the home. It is in this marketplace that Leahy's three "A's" of affordability, availability, and anonymity are made available via the Internet and open the door wide for millions who would have otherwise not entered this world. Gone are the once stifling barriers that kept pornography on the back streets of its cities and out of the lives of families. Here, under the surface and neatly out of sight is a literal flood that has bypassed old barriers and washed away established concepts of decency. This kind of radical change necessarily promises multiplied future ramifications as a sex soaked society, increasingly pathological in its ideas of normal sexual behavior, brings up its next generation. While, to Leahy's credit, he attempts to not be the "alarmist", he does wonder what such consequences of our current path will ultimately be.

Leahy considers himself an icon for sexual addictions who speaks on college campuses across America giving talks as well as participating in formal debates with Ron Jeramey, a porn star. This interaction gives him insight into the sexual attitudes of that next generation, a generation he calls "generation sex". It is in this lot that he is exposed to the cutting edge of new ideas about sex, and where he finds what he calls the "New Pornographers". These new pornographers are young people, even minors, who understand all to well how to use the new and inexpensive technologies and networking readily available to them for the production, consumption and distribution of their own pornography for their own use. Tyler Clementi is a recent example of these new technologies. Clementi earned national attention recently when he jumped off the George Washington Bridge after a film of him having sex in his dorm room was posted to Facebook. Interestingly, unlike the old pornographers who produced their smut for profit, these new pornographers are motivated by other reasons such as celebrity status in their peer groups, or just getting noticed. With the old barriers of modesty, cultural mores, and inhibitions destroyed, the clouds seem to be gathering.

Leahy interweaves statistics into this part to demonstrate the seemingly exponential changing of trends in our attitudes toward sexuality so far. There are adequate references for anyone interested in further research.

The first half of Part-Three is dedicated to those who are themselves addicted to pornography. Working from the credibility he has gained by his own recovery path, he offers a strategy to others. He starts by pointing out the necessity, first and foremost, of being honest with self and admonishes the addict to not straddle fences. It is better, he says, to do nothing rather than to attempt to live the lie that is preventing wellness. For Leahy, he fought desperately to have his addiction and his family too, but it was ultimately the loosing of his family, and his serious contemplations of suicide that followed that finally caused him to "choose life" and to, in his words, "get well". It was in his attempts to write a suicide note to his two boys that Leahy made this choice. Leahy points out also that in the recovery process, accountability within a twelve-step program are of prime importance. He analyzes several twelve-step approaches and makes some recommendations.

The last half of this part, is however dedicated to pointing out a life available beyond "the program". As with all such addiction programs, he admits that the program itself can simply take the place of the addiction. He points the reader ultimately to Jesus Christ for a life that extends beyond "recovery" and to abundance. The book concludes with the completion of his biography and his ultimate reconciliation with those he hurt.

My Thoughts

When I purchased this book I was expecting an analysis of America's porn problem. While part two does focus on this, I ultimately got way more than I bargained for. Leahy's story is compelling as he quickly draws you into his own world of sexual addition. I found myself on the verge of tears a couple of times as his story meandered through the book. Unlike most non-fiction books, this style added an element of entertainment (for lack of a better word) that makes it a page turner. It is able to hold the attention of those not normally drawn to non-fiction, as the reader joins Leahy in his journey to redemption and reconciliation. This book, I feel, will give readers insight into the new world being inherited by their children as well as into the temptations and trials that plague most people to some degree living in a sensual society. For a hosts of reasons such as denial, desensitization, naivete, repulsion, embarrassment or shame--to name a few--the right people don't seem to be talking much about this new and intrinsic detrimental element that is upon us in our new nation; our porn nation.