Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Democrats Get Over Their Fear of Big Money

Harry Reid is on the way out of his leadership role in the Senate (thank goodness). We will always remember him fondly demonstrating his Koch Brothers derangement syndrome. Through the election of 2014, he fear-mongered his Democrat brethren (and sistren) against the evils of the big money the Koch brothers spent on political campaigns.

Research by Politico has found that the Dems have gotten over their fear of big money. Note the chart above which shows Tom "Global Warming" Steyer at the top of the individual donation list with $74.3 million dollars. Next in line is Michael "Guns Are Evil" Bloomberg with a mere $27.7 million.

In smaller money, the Dems out-raised the Republicans a total of $205.3 million to $150.7 million.

And yet the Dems still lost the election.

What's important here, though, isn't the money raised, but the perception, promoted by Big Media, that the Democrats are somehow superior because they care about income inequality and bringing down the rich.

Time and time again we see that progressive dogmas always hold a double standard which only highlights the hypocrisy of their blatant attempts to hold power.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Living in a Screwed Up America

As I look back over the past year, the most prevalent struggle I see in the country are two diametrically opposed views of the role of government and its responsibilities. It hasn't been that long ago (within my lifetime) that the majority of Americans held similar views of government and upheld the concept of the rule of law.

With a president, a vice president, an attorney general, the IRS, the DHS, and the news media all vying for control and power over the American people, those who should be protecting the rights of all Americans have been replaced by power mongers and demagogues.

What else can explain President Obama who began his administration decrying the abuses of the previous president, then, a few years later writes decrees which ignore the law and bypass Congress? It doesn't matter if some agree with his decrees or not, if they ignore the founding principles of separation of powers, the president no longer protects the American people, but only the interests of his politics.

When those in power decry achievement and label it "privilege," we lose the principle of hard work, self reliance, and dismiss the possibility of making a better life for ourselves.

When Jonathan Gruber can glibly announce the stupidity of the American people, we should question the sanity of smug and arrogant academics, and the authority of the elite institutions which promote them. Having come from an academic background, believe me when I say that liberal academia has replaced God with the absolute conviction of nihilism, and that the intellectual elite care for nothing except to maintain their false dogmas.

How can so many people protest all night, burning and looting, if they have to get up in the morning and go to work? That so many can do so doesn't speak well of the current progressive policies that keep reporting to us how many jobs Mr. Obama has created.

Has anyone ever thought how wrong it is for those in power, as well as the media, to portray parasites as victims and those who demand preferential treatment as struggling for equal rights? When the media turns black thugs into heroes and black violence into protests, no one bothers to examine the effects that has on the law-abiding blacks and on their communities.

Yes, President Obama has made good on his one promise to fundamentally change America. He's made it a place where those in power can seize ever more power for themselves, if not for Obama, then for someone who comes after him. He's turned the rule of law upside-down. He's allowed criminals to become the symbol of human rights. He's promoted racial divide and violence. He's estranged over half of all Americans. He's promoted his kind of rich people by debasing others. He's promoted an educational system that teaches everyone what to think instead of how to think.

In short, he's set America up to fail and to fail spectacularly.

Welcome to the the progressive world.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Progressive Nihilism: Hunky Jesus

Modern progressives will hail San Francisco's Hunky Jesus competition as a great triumph of free speech, gay pride, freedom from religion, and a reflection of the "spirit of the community."

It is indeed the epitome of the profoundly basest ideals of progressive nihilism.

It is also another of a long list of trends in progressivism to demean anything that may be sacred to a majority of Americans.

The basic ideal behind queer society and the LGBTQQIAXYZ community, and to a large extent, liberal society in general, is: "If it's basely offensive to Christianity, then it must serve the public good."

And by "public good," progressives really means "that which is generally considered offensive and in poor taste."

Here is the moral of the story: the dogmas of progressives are blatantly offensive to the principles of decency, morality, and virtue. Yet those same dogmas dictate that progressives become insanely offended when challenged to show how such displays really serve the public good.

Progressivism is a philosophy of doublespeak and doublethink, and one that cannot long endure.

It is also antithetical to all that is right and good and decent in the world.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Are We Done with Thinking?

When we look at the recent history of philosophical thought, we group different periods by common ideas: Kantian, Post-Kantian, Humanist, Nihilist, Existentialist, Pragmatist, Modernist, Post-modernist. Current philosophy suggests that we now live in a post-thinking age.

Instead of thinking, we have entered an age where mob rule is preferred over rule of law. We are taught to do what feels good, rather than to restrain ourselves with a few rules of polite society. We are told that nothing is our fault, but the fault of an oppressive system imposed by people long dead. We are encouraged to express our basest desires, as if lust and desire were the most defining characteristics of human existence.

When President Obama, to suit his identity politics, rewrote federal immigration law, he taught us that feeling good about accepting illegal immigrants is more important than the damage to the rule of law.

When the "best minds" within our government ignore the blatant danger of destabilizing the Mideast, allowing ISIL to grow unchecked, and rely on a few remote-controlled bombing raids to protect the US interests, we stand back in awe that such tactics are even considered.

When we view riots and looting in the streets of Ferguson, fomented by people angered by injustice where there was none, we know that no thinking is involved. We only see uncontrolled rage at formless "oppression" and the chance to grab a free television. Facts and common sense don't matter to people stirred up with indignation over perceived injustice.

When politicians promise one thing, then vote completely opposite to their supposed principles, we shrug our shoulders and ask: "Did we expect any differently?" Worse, we then reelect the same politicians over and over, shrugging our shoulders after each election.

When we fork out ever increasing amounts to fund a college education, only to discover faculty and administration who would rather indoctrinate students instead of teach them, we pay for the privilege to turn off our brains.

This last example within the very institutions that are supposed to encourage thinking, is the worst offender of all. How can we as a people survive, when our educational systems are designed to promote the philosophy that thinking for ourselves is morally wrong or unnecessary? Universities have become centers of propaganda, rather than places of thinking and learning. As such, they are no better than the madrassahs of Pakistan that train young Muslims to be evil terrorists.

Behind the post-thinking philosophy is a political ideology that drives away rational thought, even condemns it, as anti-establishment. Our current government is an oligarchy, based on the ideology that politicians know best what is good for the people, and what is good for the people is a government that runs all aspects of our individual lives.

We call that kind of government authoritarian.

When a very few people take charge, or when one individual takes control of the whole, we call that kind of government totalitarian.

All indicators within our government point to a political ideology based on the principle that thinking people are dangerous to the regime.

Our government now grows and thrives because we, the people, have given up thinking. We have been indoctrinated to "feel" rather than to think. To this end, modern politics takes avery opportunity to control the message, in no small part by federalizing schools and universities.

Over the years, we have witnessed the regression of thought, in favor of an ideology based on socialist principles which deny individuals the capacity and education to think for themselves. This is the basis of liberal dogma, to turn off thinking by supplanting it with socialist propaganda.

As Joseph Goebbels once put it: "It would not be impossible to prove with sufficient repetition and a psychological understanding of the people concerned that a square is in fact a circle. They are mere words, and words can be molded until they clothe ideas and disguise."

Goebbels' thought has already been spectacularly disproven with the end of World War II. Even German military minds during the height of Goebbels' career understood the paucity of his thought. For example, Otto Ohlendorn, an SS Gruppenführer debunked Goebbels: "I always opposed Goebbels. I always tried to have people educated on a broad basis, while Goebbels tried to supply them with knowledge for the moment. Goebbels considered humans as objects to be used for political purposes - for the moment."

Isn't that what presidents and Congress for the past 20 or 30 years have been doing to the American people - considering humans as objects to be used for political purposes? Sure, we can argue that today's US politicians are nowhere in the league of a Goebbels, or a Stalin, or a Mao. I agree.

Yet we are setting the stage for such men to come into power, to overthrow the rule of law, to break with the US Constitution, to ignore "we the people of the United States," to create an authoritarian government.

As we sit back and allow such men to rule over us, the victory over thinking for ourselves will be complete.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Some Thoughts on Unlearning Liberty by Greg Lukianoff

Greg Lukianoff is a self-proclaimed liberal Democrat. He is also an attorney for FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education). FIRE is a not-for-profit organization that supports individuals in legal battles against overbearing and unconstitutional university speech codes. (Check out the group here.) He has also written the best book exposing the war against free speech taking place on university campuses across the US.

From university professors summarily dismissed, to student expulsion, to a rape accusation culture, to enforced "sensitivity" training, Lukianoff covers case after case of free speech violations orchestrated by the very system that should best embrace freedom of speech - the university.

What first struck me about the book was Lukianoff's ability to transcend his liberal roots to embrace one of the basic principles of the founding of the US - free speech. Unlike many liberals, he understands that speech must be protected for everyone, not just for the few who happen to be in power. His book cuts right to the heart of the problem with liberal university speech codes that limit and stifle, rather than encourage discourse and measured argument on campus.

Having come under fire myself for daring to have an opinion that some of my students found offensive (namely that same sex marriage harms the institution of marriage), I experienced the same problems that many conservatives have suffered within the university system. Even after all these years, I still write under the name "Euripides" on one hand, because I've created something of a "Euripides brand," but also so that I incur less risk to me and my family for actively expressing views that are unpopular within the liberalized school system.

Lukianoff admits that a lot of the problems he outlines in his book are "conservative" problems, since so many of the speech codes and student standards reflect progressive ideology. The problem, as he sees it, is that such codes create an openly hostile environment for all students. When your college education is on the line, very few students will "buck the system" or stand up to unconstitutional, illegal, and immoral pressure from school administration and faculty.

Lukianoff's book opened my eyes to the main cause of outlandish and overreaching "speech codes" at universities - the explosion of administration on nearly every campus in the country. At the time the book was written, administration outnumbered faculty across the nation. A lot of the new administration has the "responsibility" to implement prevalent ideals of the leftist utopian society, free from any conflict whatsoever (as long as everyone agrees with the administration's view).

If you've not picked up Lukianoff's book, I recommend it as a lucid argument against the trend of modern universities. It will open your eyes to the deep, pervasive problems that you, or your children will face when confronted with trying to gain an education at one of these institutions for "higher" learning.

The book is depressing in many ways, not the least of which is its confirmation that universities, by and large, suppress critical thinking instead of encouraging it. Whenever conservatives face off against liberals, we must acknowledge that much of today's fuzzy thinking and polarized conversations stem from a failing university system that has told its students what to think, instead of how to think.

Lukianoff's book is a good starting place to understand that free speech is at the core of rational thought and critical thinking. It is imperative that today's students understand Lukianoff's thesis in order to become better educated, rather than becoming a mindless drone of some university administrator's dream of utopia.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Future of Feminism - Tie-Dye Armpits

I'm curious about your reaction to this latest "trend" in feminist expression - armpit hair coloring. You know, as I stand in front of the ten thousandth class full of liberalized students in my US History class, I find that year by year the "fashion" to mangle and deface the human body into some monstrosity continues unabated.

First came the tats, with women sporting the ever popular tramp stamp. Then the tats got larger and more elaborate, covering shoulders, arms, legs, necks, backs, and some faces.

At nearly the same time piercings started wandering in rows up the ears, across the eyebrows, down the nose, through the lip, and into the tongue. You've never lived until you watch the D-average student in the third row incessantly shove an inch-long steel rod back and forth through the middle of his tongue.

If any of my students have pierced nipples, I don't care to find out.

Then came the disfigurement of gauges to stretch the earlobes. Every student who sports such gauges always make me break out into song: either "Do Your Ears Hang Low" or "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot."

Which brings me back to my original question: What do you all think? Is the next trend in dyed armpits the best way for women to express their independence and empowerment?

While I have yet to encounter a student with dyed armpit hair, I still shudder every time I stand in front of a new class of students. What will be the final result of this endless expression of "individuality" and "empowerment?"

What indeed?

Monday, December 1, 2014

Modern Liberalism Is Dreck

Modern liberalism is easy to understand, but difficult to fathom. Why do people actually believe in its doctrines? Where will those doctrines lead?

I've written several blogs in the past that explain why the liberal left is so darned annoying. Yet, in my personal pursuit of knowledge, it always seems like a good idea to revisit a topic to explore something I may have missed.

After searching through another several thousand pages of liberal books outlining its ideals and arguments, I've come to the same conclusions about liberalism that I've held all along. Modern liberalism is crap. Its ideals, while seductive and pleasing to hear, cannot possible bring about a better world. It is dreck. It is garbage. It is bantha poodoo.

The basic problem with modern liberalism, as I've mentioned before, is its double standard. Liberalism holds one ideal as valid, while rejecting that ideal when others practice it. For example, modern liberalism can laud black rights on the one hand while fomenting the worst kind of racial division  in Ferguson. It can uphold the values of the most sexually deviant while condemning anyone who is offended by them. It can praise a woman who rips an unborn baby from her uterus, and despise strong and successful women because they belong the "wrong" political party.

This double standard combines with a belief system that has no anchor, and therefore, has no possibility of producing a moral system. Sure, individual liberals can be moral creatures, but the philosophy as a whole stands on the shifting sands of moral relativism.

We're familiar with these double standards. They are manifested every day, while progressive education inculcates complete acceptance from our children. The seduction of the forbidden has a strong appeal to youth. It has tempted the young since the beginning of history.

I've been struck at how closely the ideas from a book, compiled 2300 plus years ago, describes the appeal of liberal dogmas, and also describes its dangers.
Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight. Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine and champions at mixing drinks, who acquit the guilty for a bribe, but deny justice to the innocent. Therefore, as tongues of fire lick up straw and as dry grass sinks down in the flames, so their roots will decay and their flowers blow away like dust.
I've rarely written or argued from religious texts for several reasons. I'm not about to do so here. Let's take this verse, not as a religious directive, but as a social indictment against a people who had rejected common sense and common decency as a basis for their nation.

A few examples from a modern context will show that these words still have power.

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil:
There is nothing so self-evident and long-lasting as the words penned by Thomas Jefferson, declaring the truth that all humans are granted the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. While we can equivocate on what the pursuit of happiness means, the right to life seems pretty clear cut.

That modern liberalism can so callously throw away this right of millions of the unborn, under the guise of "a woman's right to choose," stretches and breaks the fundamental right we should recognize among all humans. To deny such rights to the innocent is evil.

Even worse, in order to obfuscate the inherent evil behind abortion, long arguments are concocted (like champions at mixing drinks) with the sole intent of hiding the killing of the unborn behind a thin veneer of philosophical debate.

Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight:
President Obama recently broke the mold on executive orders by breaking the law in order to give amnesty to millions of illegal aliens living in the US. Obama's presidency has been characterized by his willingness to rewrite law in his own image, while ignoring laws he disagrees with. The end result is a nation that no longer respects law as its foundation and looks to those in power to "fix things."

The problem with Obama here is one of pure hubris - the idea that he knows better than the American people of what is good for us. In large ways and small, those who are wise in their own eyes have degraded the rule of law and the republic itself to create an oligarchy, where the few rule over the many. Federal judges now with impunity overturn laws with which they disagree. The US Attorney General feels free to ignore standing law or even to incite riots.

Even if changes from politicians come from a misplaced desire to do good or to fix problems, what each of these individuals expresses is the idea that one individual is more intelligent and capable than the entire American people. To founders of the US, such as John Adams, such was the evil of even a mild dictator such as King George.

Woe to those who...acquit the guilty for a bribe, but deny justice to the innocent:
Can there be a better example of this particular evil than those who incited men to riot and loot in the streets of Ferguson after a grand jury didn't indict Darren Wilson for doing what he was trained to do? Liberal dogma would throw the rule of law out the window for mere political advantage.

Can we imagine a worse fate for the ideals that created America than to see them dashed to the ground under the auspices of "fairness," or "equality?" How ironic our situation is, that liberalism wields these ideals as a weapon, all the while denying their virtue and power.

Can such a political system work for long? I have to come to the conclusion that modern liberalism cannot be sustained and will decay as its flowers blow away like dust. Unfortunately, it will do so only after doing great damage to the structure and institutions of the United States.

Monday, November 17, 2014

A Short Recommendation of John Adams by David McCullough

Okay, I know this book was published twelve years ago, and I'm just getting around to reading it. I've enjoyed it, though, and recommend it. The book deserves a look if you haven't read it yet.

David McCullough writes popular biographies and histories, and remarkably, makes history accessible to readers everywhere. Sure, he's been criticized for some sloppy work, but he tells good stories.

This biography of John Adams is no exception. I've always admired the man who was at the front of the American Revolution and the architect of the American ideals of liberty. This book traces a moving story about a man who was driven, who worked hard, and who sacrificed nearly everything he had in order to make his vision of America a reality.

The book also has the added bonus of not trivializing John Adams' contributions to the formation of the US in order to score some kind of neolib points with modern audiences. I grow weary of biographies and histories that tear down the past because its men and women weren't progressives, or feminists, or gay advocates. I also weary of history (found in nearly every school textbook) that rips America and Americans for its supposed imperialism or for causing all the world's evils (including hangnail and baldness). I weary of biographies where the faults and shortcomings of humans are more important than their remarkable achievements.

No, McCullough doesn't have to resort to a cheap and completely inaccurate interpretation of John Adams in order to assuage the tender feelings of modern progressives. For that fact alone, I'd recommend this book. I'd also recommend this book because at the very least it shows John Adams' amazing abilities to work tirelessly on behalf of an idea - the formation of a nation based on the value of the individual.

The book is long, because John Adams lived a long time and accomplished a lot. He was the driving force behind the Second Continental Congress. He convinced all the state delegates to declare independence from Britain. He spent years, many of them futile, trying to bring the French and the Dutch in on the side of the Americans. He became the ambassador to England once the war was over. He became vice president, then president of the US. In between times, he farmed, he wrote, and he cared for his wife and children.

Through all his difficult work, he held onto and adored his wife, Abigail. They clung on to each other through thick and a lot of thin. They remained faithful to each other and to the cause of America during long absences and trials that have easily destroyed lesser marriages. In one sense, this book is also a love story.

In fact, it is Adams' relationship with Abigail that marks him as the best kind of men - faithful and true to his wife and children through all adversity.

Is the book perfect and the writing flawless? Hardly. But at the least, David McCullough's story about John and Abigail Adams is good history which should be read by anyone who, like I am, tired of the leftist propaganda that passes for history these days.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Beware Ignorance

In the scene in Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, Scrooge notices two children beneath the robes of the Ghost of Christmas Present. When asked about them, the ghost replies:
"They are Man’s," said the Spirit, looking down upon them. "And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased. Deny it!"
While the Ghost of Christmas Present warns Scrooge of the dangers of neglecting orphans, the cautionary tale is plain: ignorance is the greatest of sins, producing nothing but misery.

Scrooge's ignorance is a sin in The Christmas Carol because he willfully ignores the pain and suffering around him. In his case, he can only redeem his miserable life by learning to reach out to others and to use his great wealth to help the poor and the needy.

Yet, Scrooge's miserly way is only one way ignorance manifests itself. Ignorance, especially willful ignorance, leads people into bondage. Ignorance prevents people from rising to their full potential. Ignorance allows the ambitious and the strong-willed to force their will on others.

I've been teaching history and political science for a long time. More frequently than not these days, I find students who come into my classes ignorant. This is not to say they are stupid. They are ignorant because they lack the basic skills and desires to educate themselves beyond getting a good grade so they can get on to the next class.

One milestone of ignorance is an utter lack of desire to read beyond the canon of liberal dogma. I realize that not everyone will read as broadly and consistently as I do, but I'd be happy if my students would actually read a real history book once in awhile (not one written merely as propaganda), or a biography of a virtuous person, or even a good novel not found on the NY Times Bestseller list.

Students who refuse to read anything that may challenge the concepts that they've been force fed from ernest, yet liberal, teachers make themselves willfully ignorant. Willful ignorance is a mortal sin among the variations of ignorance.

It is one thing to accept the dogmas taught in high school, since we are rarely ever encouraged to challenge our textbooks or our teachers. It is another to close our minds to any other possibilities than those dictated by the narrow and utterly intolerant ideals of liberalism. As Allan Bloom put it in his seminal book The Closing of the American Mind:
When the liberal, or what came to be called the utilitarian, teaching became dominant, as is the case with most victorious causes, good arguments became less necessary; the original good arguments, which were difficult, were replaced by plausible simplifications—or by nothing.
To accomplish this task, modern liberal education de-emphasizes history, to the point of calling the whole of history meaningless, or worse, evil. I rarely encounter history textbooks anymore which do not emphasize identity politics and oppression dogmas. How can college students learn not to be ignorant if all they are ever taught is propaganda and socialist dogmas?

The problem runs deeper than the modern disregard for history. Ignorance steeps our educational system like weak tea, forcing students to care about the meaningless minutiae found in standardized testing, while defunding and deleting all those things that create meaning and importance in human lives: philosophy, art, religion, music.

I refer again to Allan Bloom:
We are like ignorant shepherds living on a site where great civilizations once flourished. The shepherds play with the fragments that pop up to the surface, having no notion of the beautiful structures of which they were once a part.
The doctrines preached in today's schools are dangerous for this one, basic reason, they teach students what to think, not how to think. And, like Dickens' ghost, we must "beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased."

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Dogmas of Common Core Curriculum: Teaching That the Constitution Is Evil

From the moment I first heard about Common Core, I knew that it would be used as a tool to preach the dogmas of progressivism. How could it not? Sure, on the face of it, the National Governor's Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers sounds like an impressive couple of committees who led a grassroots campaign to improve school standards.

Except they didn't.

Instead, these two groups recommended Common Core, a system developed by a Washington D.C. based think tank of "educators" who gained enough influence and power in the federal system to connect the adoption of Common Core standards to federal money.

In short, while Common Core standards sound impressive, they are linked to federal money, to progressive ideology, and to businesses such as publishers and standardized testing companies who want to push book and test sales which preach their own agendas. It is painfully obvious that these agendas express progressive dogmas to indoctrinate (and make ignorant) the coming generations of American children.

Here's a dangerous case in point.

One of the English teachers on my staff pointed out that the newest 12th grade English curriculum now references as a non-fiction reading an opinion piece from the New York Times, entitled "Let's Give Up on the Constitution."

I guess the  progressive ideal that the Constitution is a "living" document (which removes the burdens of actually following what it says) doesn't seem to be enough for liberals anymore. In the op-ed, the author argues, using all the idiotic dogmas of liberalism, against keeping the Constitution at all.

From the opening paragraph:
As the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions.
The main thrust of the author's argument is this: The Constitution was written by dead, white men who couldn't foresee the problems we have today. Since then, we have had to make a lot of changes to laws in order to ignore the Constitution. Those dead, white men keep getting in the way of our desires to ignore the Constitution, so we should just get rid of the document completely.

The author, besides being naive, self-serving, and impossibly ignorant about the purpose of the Constitution and the dangers of an unconstrained government, wishes to promote the ideal that freedom can only come to the people of the United States by getting rid of the Constitution, and by implication, by getting rid of the Republic.

And that, in a nutshell, is the agenda, the dogma, and the danger of liberal control of education through Common Core.

Shocked and disgusted with the reading choice, the English teacher came to me for advice on how to best handle such obvious and flagrant attempts to derail the importance of the Constitution among high school seniors. Together, we decided that she could best use the op-ed piece to prompt a real discussion about the importance of the Constitution. She and her students then went through the op-ed and pointed to all the poor arguments and fallacies contained in it.

I'm concerned, however, that other teachers at other schools will use such blather to promote the narrow and dangerous views of modern liberalism. We have already nearly destroyed the purpose of education within our democratic society - to promote thinking. Now that men and women with the ideals to end thinking among students have control over school curriculum, we will become a nation of imbeciles, never knowing the better path that the Founding Fathers created for us.

Monday, November 10, 2014

The 2014 Midterm Election: Republicans Didn't Win

As I look back over last week's midterm election, I've come to the same conclusion as many. The Republicans didn't win the election. Instead, Obama lost the election.

This is an important distinction. The Republican Party has been plagued over the years with wishy-washy policies and platforms that barely defines it as anything more than the anti-Democrat party. Since the news media has also succeeded in demonizing the party as anti-everything, Republicans need to step up and become something other than the group that opposes Obama.

Yet, for the purposes of this past election, that was enough to launch Republicans back into power in both the House and the Senate.

Basically, Obama's policies suck so bad that Americans put Republicans back into power in Congress. Don't muck it up, Republicans.

Here are a few positive things I see that could come out of this past election:

1) Republicans could redefine themselves as fiscal and social conservatives. Instead of a party defined as anti-Democrats, the Republican party should take the opportunity to re-evaluate its platform and to incorporate the principles of limited government and individual freedom.

2) Senate Republicans can be useful, if only to block any further Obama appointments.

3) Harry "Everyone-Wants-to-Pay-More-Taxes" Reid is finally out of power in the Senate. It would be icing on he cake if House Democrats would replace Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democrats would replace Harry Reid as their party leaders.

4) Obama will sound even more stupid blaming Congress for obstructing his policies.

5) Obama and his Gospel of Liberalism will be held up to closer scrutiny. The press, even though the bulk of its members are converted liberals, can no long uphold Obama's policies that have been so roundly defeated in the last election. Sure, the die hard socialists will continue to spin the conservative ideals as false or evil, but in the end, the media will have to pay lip service to those Americans who changed Congress. The media, after all, want to make money and must produce products that people will buy.

6) Congress and Obama will still deadlock on most bills that the whole of Congress can now pass. There are not enough Senate Republicans to override a presidential veto. Obama will continue to exercise dictatorial powers. We'll just have to wait and see if Republicans do much more than throw epithets and threats.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

What's Wrong with School English Classes and How to Fix Them

High school English classes suck. High school students, having spent countless hours wading through the drivel and dreck of their English classes enter into college with fewer and fewer skills. Compared with students even ten years ago, those who take my college history classes today are poorer readers and writers. For them, correct spelling is optional. Basic sentence and paragraph structures no longer exist.

There are myriad reasons why high schools fail in teaching students: federal "oversight" and centralized curriculum, the No Child Left Behind Act (otherwise known as No Child Allowed to Excel), socialist-driven Common Core curriculum, idiotic teacher "accountability" standards, standardized testing, replacing teaching with testing, poor texts, poor tests, teachers' unions, general apathy. The list goes on. These all combine into a ghastly leviathan, which swallows the students' will to learn, trapping it in a cavernous gullet, where neither light nor breath of cool air can reach it.

There is, however, one overriding problem which traps and digests high school English students. This is the central failure of Common Core standards. The main problem is a curriculum designed by idiot professors of education. These have spent countless hours inventing "new" methods of torturing students, convinced in their collective minds that the next new theory will show an increase in SAT and ACT scores. They also demand more and more money, leeching it from teachers, to pay for new administrators, "experts" who design curricula, authors who write textbooks, and middle managers to implement "standards."

The problem would be easy to diagnose and treat, if it weren't for the axiomatic idea that power, once given away, is not given back, except by force. Those placed over our schools and educational system, once they were handed a little authority, turned around and unwisely used it to control and recreate schools in their own collectivist and elitist images.

The solution, it seems to me, is fairly simple: return to "traditional" methods of teaching English. These methods included reading good books, writing essays, and memorizing grammar and mechanics.

If I were to fix English classes, I'd start by scrapping all the classes as they are currently taught. Let's face it, what high school youth is going to learn to write if he or she cannot read (or worse, is made to hate to read). How can students seriously come to grips with the elitist literature of Faulkner, or Fitzgerald, or Steinbeck, or Joyce? How can current students come to care for literature when Common Core replaces good books with stodgy "nonfiction." Instead of torturing teens with endless ideas about "notetaking" (as is taught in their current curriculum), about phonetic spelling, about five paragraph essays, about incomprehensible authors, why not get them interested in English by interesting them in good stories?

Here's my plan. Instead of the current curriculum, start students at the earliest ages with several years of reading. Instead of selecting reading that corresponds to socialist ideals, or has some arbitrary designation of "canon" or "high art," reading would cover genres. The elementary school classes would choose from lists of readable books in several categories: biography, classics, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, action, spy, romance, poetry, historical fiction, humor, horror, and so on. (The book lists would be kept age-appropriate of course.) Teachers would be required to read books aloud in class. As students progressed, they could decide which genres interested them the most and read those on their own. This in turn would spark an interest in reading that modern students lack.

Of course, such classes don't readily show student progress, improvement, or accountability, all of which seem to be so important to government teaching standards. These classes would be even more disturbing to elitist English teachers, since the books wouldn't include the appallingly pretentious works that have been the standard in English classes since the dawn of the English Ph.D.

What is my response to this? Students won't appreciate so-called "high art," if they cannot read. Instead of raising a generation of illiterates, at least we'd have a generation of readers. On the way, they'd learn grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and be introduced to ideas. On the way, they might even learn how to think!

For those students who do become interested in English and American literature, I'd offer an elective entitled "Literature for the Pretentious." Here is where English teachers could inflict Faulkner, Steinbeck, Melville, or Salinger on their students. (I'd ensure that some readable authors were included in the mix, such as Ray Bradbury or Harper Lee.) Mind you, even in this class, the focus would be on the text, not on the silly liberal metatext that today's postmodernist deconstructionists love to drill into unsuspecting student brains.

What about "critical" reading? In my opinion, reading is reading. Let's get the children and teens reading first. If they can survive high school without being illiterate, then we can worry if they can read technical texts. In this case, interest will drive ability. For example, I learned to read philosophy, history, sociology, economics, and history of religions, not because my high school teachers taught me how to analyze texts, but because my high school teachers didn't entirely succeed in killing off my desire to read fiction novels.

What about writing? My experience with all ages of students, from grade school through college, clearly indicates that the best writers are those students who also read. I would require a semester of grammar, which included mechanics, spelling, and vocabulary. This class would find practical application, since the youth would be reading along with learning grammar. I'd also require one semester of general writing. Part of the semester would be spent writing a standard thesis essay, then editing it. Part of the semester would be spent writing stories and editing them. The editing process is as important as the writing process, and will teach better writing than a myriad theories on the subject.

There you have it - my plan to revolutionize teaching English. Of course it will never pass muster with the intellectual elite, with teachers' unions, with government bureaucrats, or with the current collection of leftist ideologues. We've handed the power over to them to "fix" the broken system that their ideology created. Yet, "power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will" (Frederick Douglass). When individuals and parents start demanding back the power to teach the children, perhaps the power elite will be forced to concede it. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Clinging to the Bankrupt Ideals of Postmodernism

Years ago, I and several of my colleges in graduate school, created a class with one of our favorite professors. In the class, we studied the concepts of postmodernism, structuralism, and deconstructionism. We ironically titled it: "Does This Class Have a Text?" We all took the class, tongue firmly planted in our cheeks, since, at the time, we thought that postmodernism was dead and its precepts given up as defunct.

In a nutshell, postmodernism is a reaction against the modernist period from the turn of the 20th Century. At its core, it takes a skeptical look at modern culture, especially literature. It asks questions about meaning, which often leads to the Prince of Postmodernism, Jacques Derrida's conclusion that there is no such thing as meaning outside of the text.

Postmodernism has led to the philosophy that there are no absolute meanings, nor absolute truths. Meaning does not stem from, for example, the writer, since the reader still must interpret the writer's text. There is no absolute truth, since all truth must be filtered through culture and then interpreted by the individual. Meaning and truth, then, are left up to individual interpretation.

The reason I bring this up is to point out the utter stagnation of education since the halcyon days of the 1960s when postmodernism was at its height. Our school textbooks, which in my day used to reek of Marxist ideology, now reek of old postmodernism. The postmodernism has been packaged and repackaged to keep up with modern technology, much of the time deliberately obscuring real information behind a veneer of busy photographs, mixed typefonts, innumerable sidebars, and bulleted lists.

If you are past high school years and haven't picked up a high school text lately, you may be surprised at the incomprehensibility of modern textbook design.

As I continue to review textbooks for high school teaching, I recently had the displeasure of reviewing a current American Literature text. On the chapter on postmodernism (which, of course, praised the concept ad nauseam), the text strongly argued in favor of Derrida's dictum about text and meaning. The textbook took great lengths to describe, then to inculcate, the ideal that the reader creates meaning.

Anyone with half a brain can see the fallacy of this line of thought: If only the individual reader can get meaning from the text, why do these self-appointed High Priests of Postmodernism write so much about it, trying to convince everyone that they have the "answer" to meaning and interpretation? If writers can't express meaning in their writing, why do they do so darned much of it? The least they could do is to shut up since, according to their own philosophy, anything they say gets reinterpreted through culture and through the individual.

Postmodernism also denies its own roots. No human thought is created out of a vacuum. Yet prevailing postmodern ideals deny the validity of ideas that came before them. It is a philosophy of interpretation that bites the hand that not only feeds it, but gives it life.

Much of the philosophical world has moved beyond postmodernism and its children, deconstructionism, moral relativism, and multiculturalism. Yet the doctrines of postmodernism have ossified into our children's textbooks, mingling with even older, morally bankrupt Marxism.

Unfortunately, such doctrines are now embedded in American thought, personified by such people as Barack Obama. These true believers defend the wasteland created by postmodernism's inconsistencies. From deconstructionism, past moral systems become evil. Anyone who disagrees is labeled, marginalized, or dismissed as old fashioned. From moral relativism, wrong becomes right, dark becomes light, and evil becomes good. Anyone who disagrees is jeered and mocked as a heretic.

Other philosophies stem from the old postmodernists. From postmodernism's love child with socialism - multiculturalism - Western Civilization becomes the Great Satan. All other cultures, no matter how substantively evil, are exonerated. Real evil, then, is blamed on Western oppression, instead of its true sources - evil people seeking power.

We, as a nation, will not overcome the difficulties of the present until we stop clinging to the philosophies of the past and recognize postmodernist offspring as the barrier to real understanding about how the world really works. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Is America Morally Bankrupt? Let's Find Out! With Examples!

With ebola raging in West Africa, and ISIS raging in Iraq and Syria, and Obama raging on the golf course, you'd think there would be enough for you and me to worry about. Yet, through all of these external problems, I still have found time to worry about the internal structures holding us together here in the United States. I see those social structures unravelling at a frightening pace. And while war and pestilence bring their own problems, the self-destruction of American society has the singular power to destroy the country.

I've recently written several blogs about same sex marriage and the harms it has brought to our social, political, judicial, and religious institutions. Under the guise of "equality," same sex marriage has the potential to break the weakened back of the very foundations of our society, namely the institutions of marriage and family.

This week, Arizona's marriage laws have been thrown out the window by judicial fiat - meaning that a single federal district court judge overturned Arizona's constitutional definition of marriage, which was passed in 2008 by a large majority of Arizonans.

Many of my friends on Facebook have posted and reposted memes and news stories celebrating this turn to "equality." Anyone who has disagreed has been excoriated and banned (of course, in the name of "equality").

The examples on Facebook alone should tell us something about the "equality" we face under the new morality of homosexual marriage. What it tells me is that, in general, we've lost our moral compass and can no longer distinguish between choosing right over wrong.

As cases in point, I recently came across the following four stories:

Hermaphroditic Snail Becomes Gay Marriage Mascot
Taiwanese scientists have discovered a new hermaphroditic land snail species and have dubbed the gastropod Aegista diversifamilia, "the diverse forms of human families," in honor of the "struggle for the recognition of same-sex marriage rights." (Source)

Yes, we've now been reduced to naming snails with two sex organs as mascots of same sex marriage. Is there no irony in comparing human relationships with a snail? Or in proclaiming a snail with both male and female sex organs as a model for homosexual relationships?

The mind boggles at the implications.

Marriage Rates Hit New Low
Young people are getting married later and later in life, and more people are choosing not to get married at all.

There are many reasons for the decline in marriage in the US, including an anti-marriage culture. The effect of the decline is an general attitude that refuses to acknowledge the importance to care for our young. We, in general, are removing the underpinnings of society best created to take care of the next generation of children, which in turn degrades those structures for generations to come.

In effect, we are breeding generations of social imbeciles, incapable of understanding and maintaining successful marriage and family relationships.

Redefining Marriage Hurts Women
In a heart-breaking article, a women talked about her experience as her husband declared himself gay, then proceeded to place his "gayness" above all other concerns: above duty, above family, above responsibility, and even above love. (Read the Article Here)

What this woman highlighted is the Big Lie of homosexual dogma, which is that being "gay" as a category absolves homosexuals from all other social responsibilities. Sure, there are homosexuals who maintain higher ideals, but this woman's story highlights the hidden, and very dark, side of gay ideology.

In my own experience, I've seen men who choose to follow the gay lifestyle, divide families and hurt the women they were married to. One such individual has attempted to maintain an "I want it all" attitude: staying married, attempting to care for his family, and keeping relationships with his latest boyfriend. The result is a deeply depressed wife and children who are fragmenting away from the family in order to get away from the duplicity of their father's life.

Gaystapo Tactics
Recently, ministers in a town in Idaho(!) were told to perform same sex marriages or face jail time and/or a fine. Apparently, city officials have declared their wedding chapel a public place, and therefore are somehow subject to anti-discrimination statutes.

Even more worrisome, the lesbian mayor of Houston, Texas, Annise Parker, issued subpoenas to five local preachers to submit to the government, "all speeches, presentations, or sermons related to HERO, the Petition, Mayor Annise Parker, homosexuality, or gender identity prepared by, delivered by, revised by, or approved by you or in your possession." (Source)

In the name of homosexual "rights," the mayor of Houston basically demanded to see all communication about homosexuals from local preachers, in order to censure them. Yes, the mayor's office buckled under public backlash (only to reduce the demands to "speeches" instead of sermons).

Yet, there are those who will still see that Parker's attempt to curb free speech and free expression of religion as a public good. They will see it as a means to bring "equality."

And that, folks, is scarier to me than any threat of ISIS or ebola.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Why Same Sex Marriage Is Wrong - Part 3

This is a continuation of an essay on why same sex marriage is wrong. Click here for Part 2.

In my last post, I covered some of the problems that same sex marriage creates with regard to identity politics and politics in general. Here, I'll cover two more sets of problems, the legal and the religious. Before that, however, I'll mention another political harm stemming from the law suit against California's Proposition 8, a voter-approved law which amended California's state constitution to define marriage between a man and a woman. (This is the same type of amendment passed by 31 states.)

Since the defense of Proposition 8 has made its way into the Supreme Court, gay activists have turned the issue of same sex marriage from a state matter to a federal one. The 2013 Supreme Court ruling ostensibly turned the decision of same sex marriage back to the states, then gutted DOMA, the federal law that protected marriage. Recently, the Supreme Court refused to take five state suits against same sex marriage, thus establishing  same sex marriage on a federal level, without actually producing a ruling.

The result is that voter approved amendments to state constitutions have been nullified by judicial fiat, and the will and votes of the people have been overturned because the Supreme Court allowed federal circuit and district courts to dictate their will over the states.

Hence, overturning Proposition 8 on the federal level overruled all state marriage laws, much the same way that the Supreme Court overruled state laws with regard to abortion. The aftermath of such a ruling will further divide the people of the US over the matter of more federal control disguised as a social issue.

Contrary to what gay activists and misguided libertarians argue, expanding same sex marriage through judicial fiat does not reduce government control. Now that same sex marriage has been established under federal jurisdiction, all marriage, including same sex marriage, will be regulated by the federal government in some way or another. Same sex marriage will now be mandated and the rights of citizens to define their society has been stripped away. Rather than "getting government out of the marriage business," as some have argued, it has put the federal government directly into the marriage business.

We can understand the legal implications of federal control over same sex marriage by looking at two case studies: prohibition and abortion. Prohibition was a failure for many reasons, not the least of which was that it put the federal government largely in control of what was a state and individual choice to drink alcohol. The people of the United States, not completely stupid at the time, quickly realized that federal control over alcohol was a huge mistake. It took ten more years, however, to repeal Prohibition.

Abortion "rights," on the other hand, has been a spectacular success, if you count the "protection" of women's "choice" through tens of millions of aborted children as a success. In recent years, the pro-life advocates have gained traction, and more people than ever disagree with abortion as a key issue of women's rights.

Both cases, Prohibition and abortion, created, rather than prevented, monumental legal problems at the state and federal levels. Abortion became subsidized by the federal government. Religious freedoms against abortion have been limited at both state and federal levels. 

Gay activists have pushed same sex marriage within the legal arena on the bases of the right to privacy (a court defined and made-up right) and equal protection (a right granted ex-slaves in the 14th Amendment). Both concepts must wrench the US Constitution from its intent in order to pass legislation "protecting" same sex marriage or to have the courts declare marriage laws unconstitutional. My post in Part 2 talked a bit about the damage done to the court systems, as well as the damage done from political refusal to defend marriage laws.

One legal harm from establishing same sex marriage stems from the gay activist argument based on the right to privacy. The Supreme Court decided in 2003 that privacy rights extended to the bedroom.  Once gay activists successfully overturned sodomy laws on the basis of the "right to privacy," these same activists challenged the public institution of marriage into the legislatures and courts, citing rights to privacy, equal protection, and discrimination. Gay activists have jumped from that concept to include marriage as a "right to privacy." Yet, marriage, precisely because it is such a fundamental institution of society, is a public matter. Hence, the argument of a right to privacy now legally impinges on public institutions.

Gay activists also argue on the basis of equal protection. As I've mentioned before, same sex marriage isn't "gay" marriage in the legal sense. Even though gay activists push for "gay marriage," there is simply no legal test of gayness that would establish a legal basis.

Same sex marriage would create "gayness" as a protected class status, much like "blackness" for race or "womanness" for sex. Having no gay identity test, since gayness is not race or sex, poses no end of legal problems now and in the future. While same sex marriage would allow homosexuals to gain some legal advantages given to married couples, it would be used to create a protected class of those who self identify as gay to promote special concessions and more legal protections than other citizens. This creates a legal system, not based on equal protection, but on unequal protection of a gay class of citizens.

Simply put, "gay" is not race. Homosexuals have neither the same economic, nor political disadvantages that Blacks or women held. Same sex couples have the same economic and political disadvantages as any non-married couple. Gays have the same protections against "bullying" as any other citizen in the US, perhaps more because of so-called hate crime laws. (These laws, of course, also ignore the concept of equal protection.)

Another legal issue arises because same sex marriage would neuter marriage, as well as other institutions, establishing a legal basis that denies biology. Legally saying that there is no sexual difference between a man and a woman simply cannot change biological fact. Lost in this legal argument is the original purpose for marriage: the protection of the children.

Lastly, are the harms to religion that same sex marriage poses. It is obvious to anyone who has watched the news over the years that modern liberals have pursued an overall anti-religion ideology. Over the years, we've seen a wider breech between the state and religion. (This is not a separation of church and state, this is an attempt to remove religion from all public institutions.)

President Obama demonstrated the liberal attitude toward religion in his disregard of the Catholic church when he mandated that all insurance carriers must offer birth control. The Catholic Church since has sued Obama over the infringement of religious free expression.

Same sex marriage activists overall seem intent on pressing their definition of marriage over all others, stepping on top of churches and individuals alike. Their argument, that same sex marriage doesn't hurt anyone, simply doesn't hold up to the present attempts to stifle church and religious authority. Gay activists even fund and push legal challenges to marriage, claiming utterly baseless ideals such as "marriage equality," or "fairness," while denying any equality or fairness to religious institutions. 

Same sex marriage will continue to chip away at religious freedom, as well as harm the institution of marriage by contributing to the overall immoral attitude toward sex and procreation.

Same sex marriage also poses the risk of creating state defined morality. The people of the several states have had the law trampled by judicial fiat, and the will of the people has now been altered to become the will of the courts. State defined morality is dangerous for the simple fact that, when the government can define what is and isn't moral, then the government has the power to control all aspects of our public and private lives.

This explains one reason why modern liberalism, and especially the gay rights movement, is anti-religious. These groups of people want more control over our lives, not less.

While same sex attraction may or may not be inborn, the outward expression of sexual preference is a moral question and not a question of innate consequence, nor is it a civil right. The same is true of the outward expression of heterosexuality as well.

Here are some examples to illustrate the differences:
  • Being black is not a moral question. Being a black rioter in St. Louis is.
  • Being a woman is not a moral question. Being a pro-abortion feminist is.
  • Having sexual feelings is not a moral question. The media's hypersexualization of children is.
  • Having same sex attraction is not a moral question. Preaching an ideology based on sexual preference in order to change the definition of marriage is.
Like it or not, homosexual behavior (not just same-sex attraction) crosses the social boundaries of moral custom and moral behavior. To claim homosexual behavior is akin to race or gender is to propose a false analogy. There is no such thing as equality of morality. Yet gay activists will insist that their particular moral ideal must be the only valid moral standard and therefore must be protected by law.

This is not a question of fairness or equality. This is a question of moral dictatorship - the exact same problem gay activists accuse religious conservatives of having. It is a misguided ideal at best and  duplicitous power-mongering at worst.

This is no longer a private matter of same sex attraction and private sexual preference. Gay activists have turned their ideology into a public desire to impose legally their version of morality. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

One Second After and the Apocalypse

I just finished reading One Second After by William R. Forstchen. I also recently completed reading World War Z by Max Brooks. While not shining examples of literature (they were, after all, "bestsellers") they do pose an interesting question about the trend toward apocalyptic stories. (As a side note, I recommend One Second After, World War Z, not so much.)

Perhaps more common in the science fiction genre, but certainly leaking out into the mainstream with movies such as The Hunger Games, World War Z, or even Noah, today's audiences crave post-apocalyptic or dystopian stories. More and more, we see protagonists of disease, social dysfunction, zombies, space aliens, or government.

The trend toward these types of books and movies stems from a general fear and unease felt towards many situations that seem to be out of our control (wars and disease), as well as a general distrust in our current government. Instead of having well-defined enemies in our stories, today's stories create enemies out of nature, or in the case of zombie tales, out of the unnatural. Even the rash of superhero movies (mostly the Avenger franchise) have an unfocused and shifting threat, and evil powers behind the evil powers.

During the 1950s, with the threat of nuclear annihilation, space invader and monster stories were common. Today's world is even scarier than Cold War times, with threats, not just of nuclear war, but of unseen nuclear devastation (One Second After), disease (World War Z), and the collapse of a benign American government, forming an evil empire (The Hunger Games, The Giver, Divergent).

Note that many of these stories and movies speak to teen audiences, who currently suffer from a plague of stress-related maladies. Even today's teen romances are overshadowed by great evils that threaten to destroy everything. (Many teen romances center around the thrill and dangers of vampires or werewolves.)

Now let us look at the real world and those forces which have led modern storytellers to focus on bleak and horrifying devastation.

Forstchen published his book, One Second After, in 2009, in response to his own research into the possibility of an EMP strike against the United States. The story and its conclusions are very realistic, that such a strike could destroy the US, not by directly killing its people, but by removing the very things that allow us to live in the modern day: electricity, transportation, medicine.

It is a cautionary tale, given force when we judge its conclusions against the willful disregard of the Obama administration to protect the interests of the United States. By enforcing leftist dogmas and remaking the US after his own image, Obama has opened us up to some truly evil forces that threaten to collapse society, and hence, sacrifice the lives of Americans.

It's not just Mr. Obama, it is the dogmatic lies spread by modern socialists, university professors, anarchists, perverts, and the uninformed that have created such an uncertain world, that the only way some people can escape is through stories of its total destruction.

We now write, read, and watch such stories in the theater, if for no other reason, than to assure ourselves that human will can overcome the evils present in the world today.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Why Same Sex Marriage Is Wrong - Part 2

This is a continuation of an essay on why same sex marriage is wrong. Click here for Part 1.

In my previous post, I discussed same sex marriage's challenges to semantics, society, and culture. While many may have no concerns about changing language, society, or culture to suit changing attitudes, the changes do portent a dangerous trend in a post-modern world. Those with such a world view believe that society and culture should bend to political will and hence, any institutions are subject to government's redefinition. This is called "social engineering" or "social tinkering."

Social engineering ignores the institutions of the past. Social engineers believe with absolute faith that they have the answers to solve all human ills and foibles through directed or centralized planning. There is no historical evidence that human-engineers social changes succeed as well as evolutionary social changes. In many historical examples, such social tinkering has led to unmitigated disasters - communism and fascism to name two.

Now, I am not saying that social engineering in the US is anything like communism or fascism, but I am pointing out that when social control is handed over to the government, monumental failures can happen.

Identity Politics 
Social engineering runs exactly the same risks that we find with political centralization - a tendency to subvert the democratic principle in order to affect change. This is a main problem with socialism - hard or soft. Both rely on reducing the freedom of the individual in order to conform to government ideals. Both philosophies rely on government control in order to subvert the will of the individuals to the new group norm.

Same sex marriage activists argue for political action to favor the self-identification of homosexuals who wish to be included into a class of "gay." This is called identity politics - when certain groups based on "identity" push to gain power political power over the individuals of society. Closely related to the civil rights movement of the 1960s, identity politics went much further into the arena of political power by including, not just equal rights for Blacks and women, but equal rights for a whole array of classes of people based on sexual preference: homosexuals, bisexuals, transgendered, queer, intersexed, asexual, and allies. Other identity political groups include animal rights and earth rights.

One thing all identity politics has in common is a heightened sense of oppression, where the group feels threatened and oppressed. Among blacks, the oppression was real, encoded within the Jim Crow laws of the Democrat South, or based on racial bias with whites. Among most modern identity groups, oppression is perceived only when expressed through actions contrary to social or legal norms. For example, homosexuals have acted to overthrow the basic institution of marriage, and have felt a backlash against their efforts to change the law, which they interpret as oppression.

Most of today's identity political groups are based on sexual or gender preference, rather than tangible states such as skin color or sex. This new definition of oppression has derailed the civil rights movement, by claiming any group identification as an oppressed class. The Black civil rights movement was about enfranchisement into legal and economic freedom. The women's rights movement was about economic equality. Gay rights is about public legal acceptance of homosexuals as a protected class. And, of course, gay rights is now about redefining marriage in order to fulfill some group sense of equal rights.

The problem with identity politics stems from the enforcement of concepts such as "freedom from oppression," or "freedom from bullying," or "marriage equality." Identity politics has taken the concepts of civil rights, derailed it, and now uses it to impose a political agenda based on the latest whims of perceived oppression.

One of the harms of enforcement of identity politics is the creation of "hate crimes," which undermine the rule of law by adding a purely subjective application of the law. Hate crimes somehow make murder against a protected class of citizen even more heinous that murder against any other citizen. By definition, hate crime laws ignore the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.

By pushing same sex marriage, gay activists aren't creating equality. Instead, they create a protected class status where gays get more rights than anyone else - special protection under the law - by exempting traditional, legal, and moral attitudes of marriage to fit their view of the world.

There's no doubt that same sex marriage is a hot political topic. President Obama's "coming out" in favor of same sex marriage, flip flopping from his previous two positions, demonstrates his use of same sex marriage to gain, not just political advantage, but money from deep-pocket gay supporters. (The Thomas and Kathrine Steyer Foundation, run out of San Francisco, has currently contributed nearly $43 million dollars, all to Democrat campaigns.)

Social issues, such as same sex marriage and abortion, are highly divisive, quickly separating the candidates of each political party. Social issues also divide the citizens of the US, who are quick to fling epithets at the opposite group, in a never-ending cycle of the politics of personal destruction. In this game, same sex marriage has the advantage by having the news and entertainment media on its side. There is hardly a television show or movie that doesn't make some oblique reference to gay rights, or make a denigrating remark about anyone who opposes that point of view. Hollywood propagandizes firmly on the side of politicizing homosexuality, and helping to establish a protected gay class.

Gay politics is entirely self-driven, trying to convince Americans that same sex marriage is only an expression of equality. It is, however, a wedge issue, dividing people because of the heavy-handed pressure to accept gays as a protected class, and same sex marriage as a politically-enforced social norm. When Newsweek magazine named Barack Obama as the first gay president, and did so with a straight face (so to speak), the politics of same sex marriage entered into a whole new level of political pressure. Within such a political system, there is simply no room for disagreement.

Luckily, the US has not yet tipped over the political edge of limiting free speech, despite the best efforts of leftists to stifle those who disagree.

We've already seen political damage over attempts to establish same sex marriage. A federal district court, and the circuit court have declared the majority of California voters to be bigots for amending the California constitution with a definition of marriage between a man and a woman. The district court created a new right, whole cloth, of same sex marriage, citing the oft abused equal protection clause of the US Constitution. His ruling also stated that defending marriage had no "rational basis" under the law. (This despite the fact that rational basis rulings do not apply where fundamental right is implied.)

The district court ruling, therefore, 1) created a brand new right out of thin air; 2) denied Californians the right to democratic rule; and 3) used a system of rational basis judgement irrationally - solely to defend an ideological concept.

Worse yet, the Supreme Court basically said the district court was correct by passing the buck back to the states.

Another political harm stemmed from California Governor Brown's and President Obama's refusal to defend the law. Brown refused to defend the constitutional definition of marriage against the attacks from gay activists, and Obama refused to defend the federal Defense of Marriage Act passed by the Clinton administration. Both refusals placed identity politics above the law of the land - turning the rule of law on its head.


OK, this is getting long enough. In part 3, I'll address two of the biggest problems with same sex marriage - the legal and religious aspects.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Why Same Sex Marriage Is Wrong - Part 1

With the recent wimpy Supreme Court decision to allow district courts to redefine marriage for the individual states, it's even more imperative that we understand what's at stake as gay lobbies and ideologues push to enforce same sex marriage as the law of the land.

Those who promote same sex marriage ask the question - "What's wrong with gay marriage?" Then, since they only want to hear one answer, they attack anyone who'll take up the issue and dare to contradict them. Over the years, I've spent a lot of time supporting the fight to save traditional marriage against the concept of same sex marriage.

This list compiles years of experience to review a basic list of the problems with the concept and application of same sex marriage. I do not have the inclination, nor the space to explain every point in detail, relying on a few examples to make each point.

Liberal Dogma
If I knew nothing else about same sex marriage, other than the fact that it has become a Sacred Cow of modern liberalism, I would know that such an idea is 180 degrees opposite from where our country ought to be headed. For more on the subject of Liberal Incorrectness, I invite you to watch this lengthy, though excellent, presentation by Evan Sayet:

Gay activists attempt to redefine the word "marriage" to include same sex couples. In order to do this, they deny any original meaning of the word, instead selecting only a very broad definition in order to force the inclusion of homosexuals. As an example, gay activists deny any relationship of the term "marriage" with the reproduction and care of offspring. In turn, gay activists also have to spend considerable energy convincing the rest of the world of a new definition of the term "family" - in fact denying any blood or even legal relationship as a condition of family - in order to include a dizzying array of relationships. (Again, they always take the broadest meaning in order to include the favorite liberal cause célèbre.)

Gay activists change the meaning of the term "marriage" to include same sex couples, denying the purpose of the state interest in licensing marriages - to protect the contract of marriage between a man and a woman and to protect the children's claim on the parents. Broadening the definition, gay activists can claim such meaningless definitions, such as: "Marriage is a union of love." "Marriage is an agreement between two consenting adults." "Marriage is a contract of ownership."

Modern liberalism loves to redefine terms to suit its political ends, contorting such terms as "rights" and "fairness" to mean anything they want. Changing the meaning of terms to suit ideological ends limits freedom, instead of expanding it. Gay activists use semantic manipulation in order to expand their ideology, doing so at the expense of the rights of others.

Semantic manipulation is a favorite political tool, especially among modern liberals. Semantic contortions can be used as a weapon against anyone who disagrees with their political view. (Flinging epithets of "racism" or "bigotry" is a common weapon of the left.) The problem with changing definitions to fit ideals creates a nightmare within application of law. For example, given the concept of a "hate crime," the courts now have to decide if murder is worse because a hate crime was committed. This is a nonsense question, as all murder should be subject to the full force of the law.

Redefining marriage will have major repercussion within the legal system, which will, in turn, weaken the system. Instead of maintaining the concept of the rule of law, the system will promote the rule of the "wise" and "compassionate," applying the law unequally in order to maintain an ideological position.

There is no doubt that same sex marriage will have a social impact. (It already has.) The question is whether or not same sex marriage will harm society as a whole. This, of course, is difficult to argue and to predict since harm may not show up socially for several generations. Yet, we have more than 70 years of liberal social engineering from which to draw a few conclusions.

First of all, the engineered system is failing. Social welfare institutions are falling apart. The education system fails to produce educated children, despite all of the money and "new" standards. The government is coming apart at the seams with out-of-control spending.

The institution of marriage has been all but destroyed by liberal dogmas focused on the Me Generation and unrestrained sex. Gay activists dislike the comparison of same sex marriage with the general breakdown of the institution of marriage and the breakdown of the family. Yet, the concept of same sex marriage is related to the general modern disregard for the institution as a whole. It is a byproduct of the destruction of marriage over the past 60 years.

The concept of same sex marriage rests on the same ideology that has promoted an anti-marriage meme - institutionalizing marriages based, not on trust, fidelity, and life-long relationships, but on selfishness, desire, and convenience. (Of course there are exceptions to the rule within any community. Those are the exceptions, not the rule.) Promoting anti-marriage has become the favorite pastime of the media and the entertainment industries. Such promotion destroys the foundations of the institution of marriage. With the fall of marriage, families fall, and society falls.

Another social harm stems from the gender confusion that gay activists and feminists both have promoted. We are beginning to see the problems associated with gender confusion - conflict over the use of men's and women's restrooms, the hypersexualization of children, legal battles over private clubs and entities, the promotion of gender neutral ideals at the earliest levels of school, the promotion of sex with no consequences, and the continued devaluation of traditional marriages and families. 

However, perhaps the most damaging social harm that same sex marriage presents is the institutionalizing of gay ideology. By creating a protected class of citizens, gay activists promote acceptance through threats, propaganda, youth indoctrination, intimidation, discrimination, and downright lies. Since a large segment of the population will not accept gay ideology, this promotion tears at the fabric of society by creating a false "us versus them" dichotomy. There is no room in a democratic republic to force public acceptance of a person's choice of sexual partners. Only by destroying the foundations on which such a society rests can gays accomplish their goals. 

By promoting same sex marriage, gay activists pose a whole plethora of cultural problems, guaranteeing further splits within society and law. Two examples will suffice:

If same sex marriage becomes law and established norm, what happens to the concept of Mother's Day? The holiday becomes absurd, since marriage (and by extension family) will have no relation to mothers. Will Mother's Day be replaced by Generic Caretaker Day?

School curriculum has already become a tool of modern liberals to indoctrinate children into their ideology. It promotes all of the liberal social issues without any of the rigor. It tells students what to think, instead of teaching them how to think. Gay ideology is and will continue to be force fed to children in the hopes of achieving a generation of believers. We will have created a culture based on the dogmas of liberalism, rather than on the principles of freedom and education.


This essay is already too long. I'll continue the list in my next post.