The Great Disconfirmation

In one of his recent communications with the resistance, John Derbyshire mentioned this Joel Pollak column about the demise of the Obama cult. Pollak does not come right out and say it, but Obama was essentially a totem for the Left. His election was not about him or his polices, but instead it was about returning the Ark to the Temple, so to speak. The long war with the bad whites over racial justice was finally won and the blessings of the void where God used to exist would now descend upon the righteous.

As Derbyshire points out, Pollak is not the first guy to notice this as readers of this site certainly know. The only way to properly understand the American Left is to look at it as a civic religion. Because the American Left adopted European anti-Christianity in the 20th century, it is easy to think they are anti-religious. That’s a mistake the Right has made for half a century. The New Religion, what Progressivism is today, evolved out of the Social Gospel Movement, so it carries with it many of the same habits.

The most obvious of those habits is the obsession with public morality. Public Protestantism starts from the assumption that society is judged as a whole. The righteous, like the virtuous in revolutionary France, have a moral duty to raise up the fallen into the righteous life. This is what gives them license to nose around in your business and order you around.  It’s not about fitting the economic pieces together as with European socialists. The American Left is consumed with building the City upon a hill.

Derbyshire makes the point that when a prophecy fails, it is does not mean the end of the religion.

In fact all the hysteria on the left this past few weeks yields to a religious, or pseudo-religious explanation. Clearly some of the same kinds of passions are involved that you find in committed religious believers.

Consider, however, the fact that religions very rarely fail. They just adapt.

Recall the Millerite sect that flourished in the 1840s. William Miller, who founded the sect, predicted the Second Coming of Christ at a certain date. Thousands of followers sold all their belongings and waited joyfully for the day. When nothing happened, Miller just reworked his calculations and set another day … then another.

You’d think a disappointment like that — it was actually called the Great Disappointment — you’d think it would kill a religion stone dead. Not at all. Here’s a historian writing about the Millerites, quote:

Following such a catastrophic failure, one might expect that the Millerite movement would fade away entirely. But that is not what happened. Although the fragmented Millerites languished for some time, and though many did abandon the movement, several of the competing splinter groups would ultimately gain new life. Hiram Edson’s [Millerite] sect … developed into a denomination that still exists — the Seventh-Day Adventists, who today number as many as 15 million members worldwide.

End quote. For truly committed believers, a religious or pseudo-religious passion like that can’t be put aside. It doesn’t fail, it only needs adjusting.

Again, readers of this site know where this is going. The thing that holds together these sorts of movements is an internal psychology that allows them to internalize disconfirmation. There is a famous study in psychology by three guys named Leon Festinger, Henry Riecken and Stanley Schachter. They studied a UFO cult based in Chicago that claimed space aliens were due to arrive on a certain date. When that failed to happen, the cult did not dissolve. It transformed into something else.

That’s an important lesson to keep in mind when watching the antics of the Left of late. Their lunacy is not directed at the rest of us. They don’t care what you or anyone else thinks about what’s happening. Their public acts are about signalling to the rest of the believers. By holding protests and making fools of themselves in a public way, they are providing support for one another as they work through the disconfirmation. Like herd animals, they are huddling together in the face if danger. It is pure instinct.

If they were left to sit alone at home, they would have no one around to help them through their doubts. These are people whose entire sense of self is dependent on the identity of the group, so getting out and “making their voices heard” lets them focus on something other than the disconfirmation. Trump as Hitler provides a short term bridge between the failed prophesy and whatever comes next for the New Religion. They can tell themselves that their faith was not wrong, it was just subverted by mysterious forces, or Hitler.

In the past, Progressive Awakenings were followed by period of hibernation as new missions and causes were conjured by the next generation of believers. The trouble for them this time is there is no obvious replacement for identity politics and social justice. When you’re reduced to championing the rights of mentally ill men in sundresses, you have run out of victims. The nation’s changing demographics also means that identity politics will play against this sort of utopianism.

In the mean time, the rage of the true believers will result in more public displays of incoherent misery. The reason they have no point is they cannot face the cause of their pain. It has nothing to with Trump or his policies. It is an unspeakable rage at having failed to reach the promised land. The rage is a distraction and a source of comfort to the believers as the Cult of Modern Liberalism comes to terms with the great disconfirmation of the last decade. Let’s hope they to make their way through it.

The Face of Modern Antisemitism

In a speech delivered Wednesday, that was supposed to be the pièce de résistance for one of the dumbest men to take up space in the political class, John Forbes Kerry declared himself an anti-Semite. He was not that polite about either. If he had simply said, “I hate Jews” that would be better than what he actually said. Specifically he said, “Israel can either be Jewish or democratic, but it cannot be both.” In other words, he hates the very concept of Judaism, not just a particular manifestation of it.

The implication, the only way to interpret it, is that he thinks Judaism is incompatible with liberal democracy. There’s never been a time when he has hinted at the same argument with regards to Islam. He has not even said this about Christianity. That would be laughably stupid, but Lurch is a laughably stupid man. No, he specifically singled out Judaism for this argument. Judaism is incompatible with democracy. Presumably, he would argue that Jews can either be Jewish or citizens of a democracy, but not both.

Sensible people have pointed out for years that Islam is incompatible with modern liberal democracy. The reason we say this is Muslims regularly say that Islam is incompatible with Western liberalism. Logically, Imams and Muslim scholars are good authorities on these issues so taking them at their word is a good idea. The fact that everywhere Muslims get to vote they go for theocracy confirms these claims. Muslims are not fond of democracy and they really hate modern liberal democracy.

Israel is a Jewish state and a liberal democracy. Christians and Muslims are free to do their thing, as long as they abide by the laws of Israel, which are written by the Israeli parliament. In theory, Israelis could vote to fling open their borders and let the Muslims pour into the country. They can vote for all sorts of things, because it is a democracy, but they choose to be a Jewish state that preserves itself as the homeland of world Jewry. As a sovereign people, that is their right and consistent with western liberal democracy.

John Kerry disagrees. He does not thinks Jews have a place in a liberal democracy, even one of their own. The modern Progressive sees national and ethnic identity as obstacles to the glorious future. It’s why they embrace open borders and multiculturalism. They truly believe that obliterating ethnic and national identity is the key to the lock. Jews are the most stubborn of ethnic groups because they combine race and religion into a single, immutable identity. That simply cannot work in the glorious future.

It was always just a matter of time before American progressives got around to Jew-hating. Once you go down the road of multiculturalism, you eventually end up trying to erase anything resembling cultural identity. Now that you-know-who is far enough in the past, no longer in the rear view mirror for most people, taking on the tree stump of ethnic identity was inevitable. For 2,000 years, Jews have kept their thing going in the West, despite every conceivable attempt to erase them. Now it is the Left’s shot at them.

The End of the High Church

Years ago, I had cause to be at the Episcopal cathedral in Albany for a mass. A friend was being ordained into the church as a priest, so I went up to celebrate the occasion with his family. I noted the subtle beauty of the church, particularly inside. It just oozed tradition, which is quite imposing in the spiritual setting. The outside of the building was rather plain, which is what made the inside impressive. I walked in expecting a utilitarian facility and instead I walked into a beautiful cathedral with arches and stained glass.

The mass was not well attended, despite the fact there were half a dozen people being minted as priests that day. My guess, at the time, was that most of the people were relatives of the condemned. Talking a bit with some people after the mass, I was told that attendance at Episcopal services in the area was down to a sprinkling and most of the regulars were old people. If what I saw in Albany is typical for the church as a whole, I’d bet they are finished in a generation at best. A church without worshipers is a building.

This is a common story with mainline Protestant churches. The local Presbyterian Church is lightly attended and the average age is somewhere in the 60’s. They used to have a grammar school, but that closed. They still run a daycare center, but I suspect that is just a business. They hope that the mothers dropping off their kids will decide to attend services at some point. Until then it is a cash relationship for services rendered. There’s a good chance government subsidies play some role as the kids are mostly black.

Part of what has destroyed the mainline Protestant churches is their full-throated embrace of Progressive lunacy. At my friend’s ordination, three of the people ordained were woman. Judging by the haircuts, all three were lesbians. Gay marriage is a huge issue in these churches, driving off the sensible and leaving only those who see Christianity as a vehicle for Progressive activism. Many of these churches are no longer Christian, as a theological matter. They are just Progressive meeting houses for the deranged.

If you are a normal person, the mainline Protestant churches have nothing to offer but endless lectures about the joys of liberalism. It’s a familiar pattern. First the women take over, then the men leave, except for the guys willing to take orders from the gals. Then the normal women bolt. This boiling off of the sensible eventually leaves the crazies in charge of the organization. Before long the freak flag is hoisted and it is the bar in Star Wars. It’s the pattern we saw with Labour in Britain and the Democrats in the US.

A similar thing seems to be happening in the Catholic Church, which had managed to resist the same fate until recently. The turning point appears to have been the sex scandals, which have been used by the lunatics to push out the sensible. It’s also emptied the pews in many parts of the world, as parishioners simply could not tolerate the handling of these cases. The conservatives in the Church should have gone on the offensive to purge the pink monasteries and the buggerers. Instead they surrendered.

It is hard to know if the Red Pope will live long enough to destroy the Church, but he will certainly cripple it. There is only one good response to the death of Fidel Castro and that is “enjoy hell.” That’s true for the Pope, as well. It’s perfectly fine for the religious to pray for the souls of the wicked, but it is not required. The Pope should be the one guy making that point, but instead he took the opportunity to celebrate the life of a homicidal maniac. The reason is Fidel belongs to the same Church as the Pope – the Communist Church.

What’s happening with the Catholic Church is it is following the same path as the Protestant churches. They are inviting in people from other religions, thinking they will be Catholic first and communist or Progressive second. It never works that way. The secular faith always comes first, which is why you can never find a liberal Catholic, who is pro-life. Their liberal faith will never tolerate opposition to abortion and their liberalism trumps everything else. A man cannot have two religions; one must be dominant.

The demise of the high church in the West was inevitable. Big, highly organized organizations need protection from the state to survive. McDonalds cannot exist without government protection. This is especially true of churches, which often challenge the wishes of the rulers. It’s why the Catholics were willing to cut deals with both communists and fascists. It is why the Orthodox Church supports Putin. No above ground church can exist at war with the ruling class. They always have to cut a deal.

When the the ruling classes of the West began to abandon their Christianity, it was just a matter of time. Students of the French Revolution know that the radical’s hostility to the Church started with economics, but quickly became ideological. As the religion of the Western ruling classes became one version of leftism or another, hostility to the high church was inevitable. It took longer in the US than Europe, but we are well on our way to see the elimination of the main churches.

Breaking: Heretic Apprehended

In case anyone thought the muzzling of dissent was a Continental problem, here’s a story from Britain that is worse than the German story.

An online troll ended up in the dock after posting comments ‘grossly offensive’ to Muslims on a police website.

Dad-of-seven Stephen Bennett, 39, made inflammatory remarks on Greater Manchester Police’s Facebook page, in response to an appeal for information in a sex case with an Asian suspect.

I’ll just note that the internet term “troll” has now been redefined to mean “people who refuse to shut up.” It used to mean “someone trolling for attention.” Now the Progs have defined it to be “the scary little man shouting hate think at the bridge to paradise.”

One comment he made concerned Asian women, another was likely to be offensive to Muslims.

Bennett, of Wythenshawe, also wrote: “Don’t come over to this country and treat it like your own. Britain first.”

He made the comments despite his mother-in-law and sister-in-law being Muslims, his lawyer told the court.

The response sparked outrage from Facebook users who feared his remarks would set people against each other.

When Bennett was arrested by officers in an 8am house call, he said: “Is this about that Muslim thing on Facebook? I’m getting locked up for sticking up for my own country.”

Notice how the writer is astonished that this monster does not like Muslims despite the fact his in-laws are Muslims. In the New Religion, diversity is our strength so there must be something really wrong with this guy. He’s getting a full dose of diversity at the dinner table, yet he remains a racist! Some people are beyond repair so I hope they put him down mercifully. Wouldn’t want his sort infecting others!

Bennett later admitted an offence under the Malicious Communications Act.

His Manchester Crown Court sentencing hearing was told that he was a dad-of-seven who was finding it ‘difficult to cope’ at the time because of the loss of his job, but was now back in work as a cleaner.

His lawyer added that his mother-in-law and sister-in-law were Muslims, and that he was not racist.

But web users who read his posts felt his remarks would fuel tensions.

One Muslim witness told police he was concerned the ‘irresponsible’ comments would ‘incite hatred’ and be a ‘potential tool for radicalisation’.

Another Muslim personally offended by the remarks challenged Bennett online, telling him ‘act your age’.

People in the wider community were also offended, prosecutor Gavin Howie told court, with one female Facebook user describing his remarks as ‘offensive to all women’.

Orwell deleted things like this from his own work as he assumed no one would believe it, even in fiction. The suspension of disbelief can only go so far. We used to mock primitives for carrying on like this. We still do. The accused would be charged with black magic and his accusers would claim to have been given the whammy by the accused. The judge would then consult the court shaman, who would read some goat innards or his star maps and offer up an opinion.

The religious aspect of this is clear. In the New Religion, the happiness of the dusky people is the sign of collective morality. If the muzzies are vexed, then it must be the fault of the honkies for failing to embrace diversity. It’s why the good thinkers take the side of cop killers. Even through the cop is doing an important duty, the unhappiness of the killers, the black ones, is a sign the void where God used to be is unhappy with the people.

You’ll also note that one can be indirectly “offended” by a heretic. Why else include in the story that one Muslim was “personally” offended? It means one can be transitively offended, in the same way one can feel shame for the sins of your society. The concept of “offense” has taken on a spirit form like a jinn. How long before the theocrats demand we affix hex signs on our homes and wear talismans to ward off the racist jinn?


My Problem With Atheists

My general impression of Richard Dawkins is that he is an unrelenting d-bag. I don’t know the man and I don’t know much about him. I read his one important book a long time ago and I am more inclined to his side in the great debate between Dawkins and Gould. I think Dawkins is a bit too narrow and reductionist, but Gould is simply afraid to face some tough facts about human biodiversity. None of that stirs much emotion in me. What has always bugged me about Dawkins is his evangelical atheism.

I’m not a religious man and I can’t say I’m a believer, but I’m not an atheist. To be an atheist is to know there is no god and as a matter of simple logic, no one can know that. In the set of things that are possible, no god is one member. A single god is another. Multiple gods is yet another. This set exists in the set of things no man can know, at least not in this life. You can believe, but you cannot know. Christianity incorporates this reality, which is why we have the expression “mystery of faith.”

Now, I accept that many people will disagree with that formulation. Many religious people will argue that they do, in fact, know that God exists because God speaks to them. Many atheists will argue that the lack of a belief in God is the same as believing there is no God. I don’t accept the premise of the former or the logic of the latter, but I don’t care all that much either. I’m indifferent to these things because I don’t have to live with them. I don’t walk around worried about my relationship with God and I don’t worry about your relationship with God, or the lack of one.

What I do know is man is a believing machine. Belief most likely evolved with language, which means it is one of modern man’s defining traits. As is the case with much of evolution, this is a guess, but read enough history and you begin to think it is a damn good guess. There’s never been a time when man did not have strong beliefs about a transcendent order. Even communism is an argument about returning to the natural order. Commies may not believe in God, but they believe they can do his job.

The old saying is that “a man who believes in nothing will fall for anything” and that has been my observation. Humans are built to believe and it is only a question of what they believe and how strongly. Some are deeply devout and others, like me, are over on the skepticism side of the belief range. Those fervent atheist, those devout atheists, are simply believing in something that is just as unknowable and requires as much faith as any formal religion. They just lack the decency to admit it.

Unlike those Christian proselytizers, who knock on my door to tell me the Good News, atheists never fail to let me know they are here to bring the Bad News. Atheists take a great deal of pleasure in making others unhappy. In fact, it seems to be the point of their religion, a religion they never shut up about. I’ve never met an atheist who does not hold his fellow man in contempt. It’s not a reserved contempt either. It’s a public, snotty contempt like you see in this story.

Dawkins has been making war on God for decades hoping that one day God will join the fight. In fact, it’s the reason he gets in the news at all anymore. Like many celebrity scientists, he stopped doing any real work years ago. Now he is just a professional celebrity, who courts the admiration of Progressives by making war of Christians. It’s a shabby way to be famous, but a familiar one. Black Science Guy leveraged his management of an amusement park into wealth and celebrity, by mocking the right people.

Bill Maher is a grubby pervert who got rich running a TV ministry for dimwitted liberals. For those who grew up watching TV preachers, Maher’s act is obvious. His show is church for moonbat shut-ins. Dawkins is on the show not because Maher or his audience understands a thing about genetics or biology. No, the point is to have a show where the atheists jeer at those who believe in God. Pagans lit fires and sacrificed animals to please their gods. Atheists jeer at Christians to please themselves.

Atheism is a religion for those incapable of selflessness, but obsessed with venerating themselves anyway. It’s a religion for those who want grace on the cheap. The major world religions make demands of the adherent. The Mohammedan believes Allah commands him to act in specific ways. Christians believe God has specified rules for those who accept Christ into their life. There’s no one to make such demands on atheists, so they make demands on everyone else. It’s why they always have a look on their face like they just detected a bad odor. You’re not meeting their standards.

That’s my problem with atheists. I don’t care what you believe as long as it does not ruin the limited amount of time I have on this earth. I would not care about Islam if not for the fact Muslims tend to explode in public places. Similarly, I would have nothing to say about atheism if not for the fact atheists go out of their way to be such raging public douche bags. I would have no reason to think about Richard Dawkins, but he keeps showing up to make sport of those who believe in God. That makes him a giant douche, which appears to be only point of atheism.

The Eco-Struggle

Way back in the 1980’s I was working for a Democrat Congressman and Al Gore was a first term senator.  Even then there was talk that he could one day run for president. I was just a kid so I naturally assumed it was true and paid attention to his career. When he ran in ’88 for the Democratic nomination, my impression was that he was a very weird dude. He reminded me of a distant cousin who came back from Vietnam with a heroin problem. Even after he got clean, he was still screwed up.

When Gore ran for President in 2000, I was pretty sure he was having some sort of nervous breakdown around the time of the debates. In the first debate he carried on like a child, making weird noises and faces trying to distract Bush. He was criticized for it, especially after the VP debates, which everyone thought were great. What made me think he lost his marbles was that he dressed like Dick Cheney and aped his tone and mannerisms in the second debate. Al Gore had become Zelig.

Of course, any doubts about his sanity were settled after the election when Gore dropped out of sight and went on some sort of spiritual pilgrimage. He got fat, grew a beard and walked the earth like Kwai Chang Caine, only to come back as an Old Testament prophet, instead of a Shaolin master. His preaching about global warming is, aesthetically, right out of the Hebrew Bible. Al Gore is Ezekiel telling you eco-sinners to repent or face the wrath of Gaia. Instead of idolatry, the sin is enjoying modern conveniences.

If you listen to Gore’s sermons on global warming, you can’t help but see them as sermons. He is preaching a faith that is not based on science, even though it borrows jargon and concepts from legitimate science. This TED Talk is a pretty good example.

We now have a moral challenge that is in the tradition of others that we have faced. One of the greatest poets of the last century in the US, Wallace Stevens, wrote a line that has stayed with me: “After the final ‘no,’ there comes a ‘yes,’ and on that ‘yes’, the future world depends.” When the abolitionists started their movement, they met with no after no after no. And then came a yes. The Women’s Suffrage and Women’s Rights Movement met endless no’s, until finally, there was a yes. The Civil Rights Movement, the movement against apartheid, and more recently, the movement for gay and lesbian rights here in the United States and elsewhere. After the final “no” comes a “yes.”

When any great moral challenge is ultimately resolved into a binary choice between what is right and what is wrong, the outcome is fore-ordained because of who we are as human beings. Ninety-nine percent of us, that is where we are now and it is why we’re going to win this. We have everything we need. Some still doubt that we have the will to act, but I say the will to act is itself a renewable resource.

Even if we assume anthropogenic global warming is a real thing, an assumption that is increasingly dubious, “solving” it is an engineering problem, not a moral one.  To be a moral problem makes assumptions about the future that are matters of preference, not moral certainty. The Mesozoic Era was much warmer than today, with little difference between winters and summers on most of the earth. The planet was teaming with life, including the dinosaurs. Life, including humans, may flourish in the balmy future.

The science is not the point, of course. This is a crusade for guys like Gore and the others in the New Religion. The point of the crusade is to fail, which is inevitable with something like climate change. There is no “perfect” climate or even a correct range. Climate is by definition a dynamic thing.  No matter what happens to temperature data, the weather and government policy, the global warming cult will be out on the streets, banging their pots and pans, telling us to repent. For these people, we are always eco-sinners in the hands of an angry Gaia.

As with all iterations of the New Religion, the struggle is a central part of the cult of climate change. The truest believers are all members of the ruling elite, yet they carry on like they are plucky underdogs fighting mysterious dark forces that secretly control society. The strange thing you see with guys like Gore is the sacralizing of suffering on behalf of the cause. The whole climate change racket is shot thought with whining about the need to give up the comforts of modernity.

Even weirder, they have no intention of actually suffering for their faith. Instead, they want to make you suffer. Al Gore can buy “green credits” like indulgences because he is worth close to a billion. That means he gets to live like a royal, enjoying your suffering as you try to work the new gas can. His mansion is lit up like Versailles, while you squint in the florescent haze of your eco-friendly CFL. It’s suffering by proxy, where they sacrifice their time to watch you suffer as a result of their policies.

What strikes me about it is the utter pointlessness of it. The endless posing and posturing has no end because it has no end point. A faithful Christian at least has the serenity of his communion with God. The Muslim, at the click of the detonator, knows he will be with Allah. Climate change fanatics have nothing but a hopeless misery. Even if all of their policies are enacted, nothing comes of it.

The cult of climate change is a church with no sanctuary, so everyone assembles in the nave for no reason other than to be seen by the other believers. These are people suffering from a form of phantom limb syndrome. Instead having had a leg chopped off that they can still feel, it is their sense of the divine that has been amputated. The result is this weird nature cult run by billionaires.

The New Normal

A feature of modern life is the public act of grief after a “mass casualty event” like a flood or an Exploding Mohamed Occurrence. Once things settle down, the people in charge gather up for a parade or a ceremony at which they show everyone just how upset they are at what happened. The media makes a big deal of it and the public is encouraged to pretend it is a big deal. Then everyone goes back to what they were doing and we forget all about it.

In the Bronze Age, public acts of piety were common. In fact, they were a necessary part of the life of the polity. The ruler would participate in rituals in order to show the people he was in good with the gods and that he was sufficiently pious. It is argued that Cyrus the Great was able to defeat Babylon because the Babylonian king, Nabonidus, was not participating in these rituals, therefore his people welcomed the conquerors.

Today we don’t have our leaders slaughter a bull to the gods or do something interesting with virgins. Instead, our rulers invite barbarians onto our countries to slaughter us, so the rulers can then come out and show their piety. After the Exploding Mohamed Occurrence in Belgium, the European “leaders” had the typical ceremony.

Brussels Mayor Yvan Mayeur has led a minute’s silence in Paris with his French counterpart Anne Hidalgo.

The memorial for victims of the Brussels and Lahore attacks came exactly a week after explosions at the airport and on the metro killed 35 people in the Belgian capital.

“There is no more normal,” Mayeur warned. “This is a concept that needs to be redefined. We are in a different era and we need to live in this dimension and keep believing that our model of an open, multicultural city such as Paris, Brussels, London or New York, this is what we want to be. This is the future and that is the message I wanted to bring.”

Notice that expelling the Muslims is not an option? Notice that repelling the Muslims is never an option. Instead, we have to just accept this “new normal” where strange men with beards suddenly explode in public places. If Volkswagen made cars that exploded at the same rate as Muslims, the president of the company would be in jail and the company in bankruptcy. But the religion of multiculturalism overrides everything, including civil defense.

We are well past the point where this reckless behavior by the elites can be explained as simply mistaken. That quote makes clear that even the dullest politicians understand that a world of open borders is a future where the Exploding Mohamed Occurrence is going to be like the Windows game Minesweeper. Tick the wrong box and it is game over for you and your family. But you being blown to bits or having your daughter raped is the price you pay so they can have their public vigils.

Increasingly, this is where the evidence points. The Revolt of the Elites has as one manifestation a compulsion by the managerial class to create technocratic solutions to social problems. Given that the big issues of scarcity have been conquered, they are unconsciously creating new life threatening problems so they can solve them. I suppose we should be grateful that it is just Exploding Mohameds and not a new form of the Black Death.

The one thing George Bush said that was correct was that the job of government is to keep the people safe. Ultimately, settled people have tolerated hierarchical government where a minority rules the majority because of safety. For the overwhelming majority of people, a peaceful life of poverty beats a turbulent life, even one of prosperity. Most Americans would choose to be pets to a race of super intelligent chimps if it meant safety and comfort.

The bet being made today by the people in charge is you will accept a world of Exploding Mohameds. They will build out the custodial state, cameras on every block, even in homes, cops reviewing your twitter feed and the elimination of personal privacy, all in the name of safety. Every time a Mohamed goes off in a public space, the rulers will rush around acting like it is something they wish to prevent, while using it as a reason to slowly slam the cage door shut on the natives.

The problem here is that history has no example of this working. In every case where the people in charge have failed in their basic duties, the people in charge ended up dead oir fleeing for their lives. Maybe the technological revolution is allowing a break from historic trends. Maybe the people in charge can play this weird game of human chess and remain immune from the consequences. It is, however, not the way to bet.

The Entirely Worthless Catholic Church

There Catholic Church is now a disgrace. The images of the toe-sucking Pope over the weekend should have been enough to empty the pews for good, assuming anyone was left after the pedophile priest scandals. Now we see that Catholic universities are going full moonbat, censuring people for expressing what is still Catholic dogma.

In the fall of 2014, junior faculty member Cheryl Abbate told a student, who secretly recorded the exchange, that his defense of man-woman marriage was an unacceptable topic in her ethics class and compared his views to racism. She said, “You can have whatever opinions you want but I can tell you right now, in this class homophobic comments, racist comments, and sexist comments will not be tolerated.” And then she told the student he should drop the class.

On this very popular blog, Professor McAdams outed the incident and charged the teaching assistant with “using a tactic typical among liberals now. Opinions with which they disagree are not merely wrong, and are not to be argued against on their merits, but are deemed ‘offensive’ and need to be shut up.”

A firestorm ensued that pitted the academic freedom of McAdams against the leftist pieties of the officially “Catholic” institution.

The teaching assistant is said to have gotten mean emails, though she was hailed as a liberal hero and went on to a tenure track position at another university. McAdams was brought up on charges.

It was announced this week that a “diverse” faculty committee recommended to the university president that McAdams be suspended without pay from April 1 through the fall of 2016 and that he lose his job unless he admits “guilt” and apologized “within the next two weeks.” Specifically, the demand is “Your acknowledgement that your November 9, 2014, blog post was reckless and incompatible with the mission and values of Marquette University and you express deep regret for the harm suffered by our former graduate student and instructor, Ms. Abbate.”

The ever quotable and crusty McAdams compared the demand to the “Inquisition, in which victims who ‘confessed’ they had been consorting with Satan and spreading heresy would be spared execution.” He called the demand a violation of “black letter guarantees of academic freedom embodied in University statutes.”

He also charges the university president with dishonesty since the faculty panel did not require such an admission of guilt or an apology. McAdams said such a statement from him would amount to a “loyalty oath” and he says he will not submit.

It’s perfectly reasonable for a religious institution to require its employees to be members of the religion. Similarly, a Catholic entity can demand that its employees support the positions of the Catholic Church. This is the basics of a civil sane society. If you don’t agree with the Catholic Church, don’t go to work for the Church or affiliated institutions. If I went to work for some devout Muslims, I would not bring a ham sandwich to work for lunch. It’s just common decency.

Marquette is allegedly a Catholic institution. The last time I checked, the Church still rejects the fruitless arrangement of gay marriage. Yet, here they are allowing Social Justice Warriors to fire a professor for upholding the Catholic position on marriage. What sort of church allows enemies of its existence take over its institutions like this? Why would anyone want to be a part of such a spineless, gutless hypocritical enterprise?

This is really not much a surprise. The Catholic Church is following the same path as the main Protestant sects. The Episcopal Church is a carnival of perversion with gay bishops and homicidal lesbians. It’s why their pews are empty. Who wants to celebrate that? The answer, of course, is no one and that’s why the Catholic Church is becoming a sad joke. Even with fair warning, they are heading down the same rat hole.

True Believers

If you have been reading this blog for any length of time, you know a theme here is that people are more often driven by irrational belief than cold hard reason. Evolutionary biology tells us the belief is one of the oldest cognitive traits, probably co-evolving with language. The quest for salvation, grace and glory are at the heart of human history, because they are the things that drive men to dominate other men.

In the current age, formal religion based on the super natural has mostly fallen away. Look at the empty churches across what we used to call Christendom and it is hard not to see the West as post-Christian. With some exceptions, the leaders of the free world, as we used to call the West, are secular men and women, lacking any identifiable attachment to a Christian sect. The exceptions are usually attached to modern sects that have found a way to wrap Christianity around the core of Rousseau-ist theology.

This “secularization” does not mean that men are less fanatical or lack belief. It just means it is untethered from the traditional constraints of organized religion. Christianity was particularly good at modulating belief, as well as directing it into useful habits. Of course, the Catholic Church was very good at rooting out the dangerous fanatics. The suppression of the flagellants is a good example and one relevant to our current age.

My favorite example, as an aside, is Konrad Schmidt, who claimed to be Frederick II and baptized himself in the blood of his followers. His band of fanatics abandoned their normal lives and spent their days praying in preparation for Judgment Day. The Inquisition had them burned at the stake before they caused too much trouble. For most of human history, people understood that the unhinged fanatic was more dangerous than the barbarian at the gate.

It is one of the many things we seem to have forgotten in the modern age. The bombings in Belgium once again remind us that the fanatic is the most serious threat to human civilization. I don’t mean the fanatics who self-detonated in the airport. I mean the fanatics who invited them into the West and now demand that we invite ever more of them into our lands. The bodies are still warm and the open borders fanatics are demanding even more immigration.

Read that Vox article and the only conclusion is that the writer is so committed to open borders she can no longer accept reality. Instead she is forcing reality into the world she believes is just over the next hill, the fulfillment of prophesy. Amanda Taub may be harmlessly crazy, but the people running Western countries are just as unhinged as she is over the topic of immigration. Open borders is now a religion for these people. They will die for it, or at least let you die for it.

What other conclusion can be drawn from current events?

There’s no economic argument for importing foreigners. Wages in Western countries have been flat for decades. There are no unfilled jobs that can only be filled by foreigners. The demand for unskilled labor is falling, as automation take over in the West. Importing millions of illiterate young men who have no usable skills and the IQ of a grapefruit adds nothing but a burden to the economies of the West.

The other side of this is who has ever heard someone demand that their town or village invite foreign settlement? Were the residents of Amsterdam demanding their government fill up their city with Moroccans? Were Germans in Frankfurt organizing rallies in the 80’s demanding the importation of Turks? Did the people of Lewiston Maine ever get a chance to vote on the importation of Somalis?

Of course not. There never has been a practical reason to import foreigners into the West, much less hostile, low-IQ savages from the Middle East. Whatever contributions have been made to the Belgian economy by Muslims were just blown to bits by a pair of suicide bombers. There are now rivers of blood because the leadership of Europe has been overrun by what looks increasingly like a suicide cult.

Angela Merkel, who will be remembered as one of history’s greatest monsters, is a good example to study. This piece on her from a few months ago walks you through her “evolution” from mundane Christian lady to a prominent deacon is what amounts to liberation theology, centered on the annihilation of the West as penance for generations of oppression.

Merkel is not alone, of course. The religion of the West, at least for the people in charge, is the toxic blend of egalitarianism, multiculturalism and anti-racism. The more the bodies stack up, the more they are convinced they must somehow atone for the sins of the West. Each new blast renews their faith. There’s no reasoning with them and there is no bargaining with them. They are true believers.

Race Unrealism

I’ve often argued that anti-racism has become a religion, maybe something of a cargo cult. The adherents keep replaying the events of the Civil Rights Movement hoping something magical happens. The obvious stuff is the weird obsession with Hitler and the KKK. Every public figure they don’t like is Hitler and every group they don’t like is the KKK.

Then you have the hilariously insane stuff like calling the NBA diverse while baseball is lacking diversity. The word “racist” simply means “bad” for gentry liberals. This Jeff Jacoby column is worth reading for this sort of loony race mongering. Here’s the good part:

Do gender quotas pose that problem? No. But racial quotas certainly do.

American society is awash with race-based quotas, check-offs, preferences, and diversity policies. In countless settings — from college admissions to workplace hiring, from government contracts to legislative redistricting — opportunities and benefits are tied to racial percentages.

Twelve decades after Plessy v. Ferguson, the notorious Supreme Court decision in which eight justices upheld the constitutionality of racial segregation, Americans are labeled and sorted by race more obsessively than ever. It was in Plessy that Justice John Harlan delivered his ringing dissent: “Our Constitution is colorblind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. . . . The law regards man as man and takes no account of his surroundings or of his color.”
Harlan’s fierce insistence that Americans are not to be treated differently on the basis of race became the great objective of the Civil Rights movement in the 20th century. “Racial criteria are irrational, irrelevant, [and] odious to our way of life,” argued Thurgood Marshall on behalf of the NAACP in 1950. “There is no understandable factual basis for classification by race.”

Marshall’s statement was even truer than he could have imagined. Today we know for a fact what scientists in the 1950s could only have surmised: Race is not biological. It is a social construct, not a genetic reality. The DNA of blacks cannot be distinguished from the DNA of Asians or the DNA of whites. Unlike our sex, which is stamped in our chromosomes, our racial and ethnic identities are purely subjective.

“I am an African-American, but in parts of Africa, I am white,” says Stanford professor Duana Fullwiley, an anthropologist of science and medicine. When research in West Africa requires her to fly from California to France to Senegal, she told Harvard Magazine in a 2008 interview, “My race changes as I cross the Atlantic.” In the United States she is black; in France she is considered métisse, or mixed-race; in Senegal, everyone regards her as white.

Of course human beings vary widely in their appearance. Populations from different parts of the world differ notably in their skin color, facial features, and hair texture. But those distinctions are superficial, not racial. They have no immutable significance. They contribute no more to “diversity” than right- and left-handedness do. To rely on such criteria when hiring employees or drawing electoral maps or assessing a corporate board is about as sensible as consulting a Magic 8 Ball.

Exactly no one in the quantitative fields thinks race is not genetic. There’s a debate whether race is the right word as there is great diversity within races. East Africans, for example, are very different from West Africans. East Africans dominate distance running, for example, while West Africans dominate sprint races. This is just one group difference that is well known in quantitative science.

Jacoby may have lost his marbles, but my recollection is he is the token normal at the Boston Globe. To balance his hate speech, they have a thousand hooting maniacs from the Cult of Modern Liberalism. That’s diversity! So, Jacoby may have gone native, but my sense is he is having some fun mocking the the Cult for their anti-racist irrationality.

This is why anti-racism is a religion and not a tactic. From the perspective of the political Left, racism is highly useful. I’m not just talking as a shaming tool. I mean as a political wedge. Demanding proportional representation in legislatures, for example, benefits the Left politically. Demanding head counts by race would help bust up natural rights and replace it with the authoritarianism of positive liberty. But, they can’t do it.

That’s the thing with the religious impulse. It’s largely a theatrical concept. The faithful would rather face the lions than renounce their faith because just before the jaws clamp on their throat, they see the adoration of their coreligionists. Anti-racists would rather damage their own cause than compromise on the faith. It’s what defines them.