Monday, June 22, 2009

David Cameron’s new EU group is Catholic and Reformed Conservative and Reformist

David Cameron has just secured his place in the history books, and he is not even yet Prime Minister. But this sort of decisive and bold leadership establishes that he has the precise qualities required to be so. He is not quite a Martin Luther, but the Leader of the Conservative Party has initiated a reformation in Europe which has the potential to change the course of EU history just as seismically as Luther changed the course of Western civilisation. When the obscure monk nailed his 95 Theses to the door of Wittenberg University in 1517, there was universal religio-political condemnation which resulted in excommunication and (they assured) eternal damnation. Instead, they got the Reformation of reformations, and the theology and name of Martin Luther have eclipsed that of a hundred popes.

And so, in 2009, a courageous and untried politician has posted his 10 theses to the cyber-door of the European Parliament, and there is much wailing and gnashing of teeth from those who are the self-appointed guardians of EU orthodoxy. As he is excommunicated by President Sarkozy of France and Chancellor Merkel of Germany, he is besieged by those same cries of ‘schism’ and ‘traitor’ which tend to herald isolation and promise eternal damnation.

David Cameron has fulfilled the solemn promise he made during his 2005 campaign to become Leader of the Conservative Party, and a new protestant movement has begun. He is ditching more than 20 years of Conservative co-operation with the mainstream ‘centre-right’ Christian Democrats in the Parliament, the European People's Party, on the grounds that it is dominated by those whose ultimate aim is a United States of Europe with a single government and a single currency.

But the philosophical reality is that true Conservatives are always reformist: they simply have to discern between that which merits conserving and that which needs reform. And the EU, an institution stubbornly squatting in the same post-war mentality with which it was conceived, is in desperate need of reform. Just as Luther in 1517 dared to challenge the immutable doctrine of papal supremacy which heralded the end of Christendom, so David Cameron has issued a declaration which rides roughshod over the infallible doctrine of ‘ever closer union’, thereby proclaiming the demise of its successor empire. The abuse and corruption of 16th-century religion has found conducive accommodation in 21st-century politics. By issuing his declaration, Mr Cameron manifests the very Protestant instinct for liberty, equality and accountability which yielded the ethics of Western democracy and sowed the seeds of its capitalist economic success.

On this, the Feast Day of Sir Thomas More, the Patron Saint of Politicians, it is apposite to consider the observations of Lord Shore of Stepney on the EU:

"…no one who has been engaged seriously in the business of examining draft EC laws and treaties can have any doubt about their quite extraordinary – and deliberate - complexity. Every new article or treaty clause is, with reference to articles in earlier treaties - generally to be located in a separate treaty volume. Indeed part of the whole mystique of Community Law is its textual incomprehensibility, its physical dispersal, its ambivalence and its dependence upon ultimate clarification by the European Court of Justice: and the Brussels Commission and their long-serving, often expert officials are, in interpreting and manipulating all this, like a priestly caste - similar to what it must have been in pre-Reformation days, when the Bible was in Latin, not English; the Pope, his cardinals and bishops decided the content of canon law and the message came down to the laymen, only when the Latin text was translated into the vernacular by the dutiful parish priest.

It is when one reads such an account that one begins to grasp the importance of David Cameron's initiative in forming a group capable of protestation against that which hitherto has been universal. One must hope that they communicate incisively in the vernacular. For all the EU’s supposed transparency, accessibility and long-promised comprehensibility, the Lisbon Treaty might as well be in Latin: it is Greek even to the Greeks. To counter such purposeful obfuscation, The Prague Declaration (for that is what it is to be termed), sets out the 10 aims and values of the new parliamentary grouping which seek to challenge the EU's otiose settlement:

"CONSCIOUS OF THE URGENT NEED TO REFORM THE EU ON THE BASIS OF EUROREALISM, OPENNESS, ACCOUNTABILITY AND DEMOCRACY, IN A WAY THAT RESPECTS THE SOVEREIGNTY OF OUR NATIONS AND CONCENTRATES ON ECONOMIC RECOVERY, GROWTH AND COMPETITIVENESS, THE EUROPEAN CONSERVATIVES AND REFORMISTS GROUP SHARES THE FOLLOWING PRINCIPLES:

1. Free enterprise, free and fair trade and competition, minimal regulation, lower taxation, and small government as the ultimate catalysts for individual freedom and personal and national prosperity.
2. Freedom of the individual, more personal responsibility and greater democratic accountability.
3. Sustainable, clean energy supply with an emphasis on energy security.
4. The importance of the family as the bedrock of society.
5. The sovereign integrity of the nation state, opposition to EU federalism and a renewed respect for true subsidiarity.
6. The overriding value of the transatlantic security relationship in a revitalised NATO, and support for young democracies across Europe.
7. Effectively controlled immigration and an end to abuse of asylum procedures.
8. Efficient and modern public services and sensitivity to the needs of both rural and urban communities.
9. An end to waste and excessive bureaucracy and a commitment to greater transparency and probity in the EU institutions and use of EU funds.
10. Respect and equitable treatment for all EU countries, new and old, large and small."

The new group consists presently of 55 MEPs:

• 26 British Conservative MEPs
• 15 Polish MEPs from the Law and Justice Party
• 9 Czech MEPs from the Civic Democratic Party
• 1 MEP from Belgium's Lijst Dedecker - Derk Jan Eppink, a Dutchman who is a former senior European Commission official
• 1 MEP from Finland's Centre Party, Keskusta - Hannu Takkula (who has left the Liberal Group where the rest of his party sits)
• 1 MEP from the Hungarian Democratic Forum - Lajos Bokros, a former finance minister
• 1 MEP from the Latvian National Independence Movement - Roberts Zile, a former finance and transport minister
• 1 MEP from the Dutch Christian Union - Peter van Dalen

It is a fragile collaboration, hanging, as it does, by a number of slender threads. Since the group needs a minimum of 25 MEPs from seven countries in order to fulfil EU criteria, the single members may exert disproportionate influence. But that is the case in any coalition in the system of proportional representation. And it may similarly be observed that the Conservative and Reformist Party may also exert disproportionate influence on the EPP with which it will rightly cooperate on legislation which is deemed to be in the Conservative interest.

One now awaits the spitting and scorn of the Left.

The Guardian has already referred to David Cameron’s ‘militant Roman Catholic’ EU partners who believe ‘global warming is a lie, homosexuality is a "pathology" and Europe is becoming a "neo-totalitarian" regime’. The paper talks of the ‘ingrained prejudice’ of ‘fundamentalist Roman Catholicism’ which is intent on ‘peddling a daily diet of bigotry and paranoia’.

And the National Secular Society decries the order from the Roman Catholic Church in Poland to ‘Pack the EU Parliament with obedient Catholics’ who ‘will help the Church impose its teachings on European law’.

It appears that any political group which seeks to conserve Christian ethical principles, protect the unborn, sustain the institution of marriage and uphold the family as the foundational building block of society, is ‘neo-fascist’.

As Daniel Hannan MEP has already observed, Labour MEPs are already ‘sitting with Polish homophobes, Stalinist nostalgics, an old IRA man and a 9/11 conspiracy theorist who travels the Muslim world arguing that the twin towers were brought down by Israel. And the EPP includes ‘a Spanish party whose leader refuses to disown Francoism, a German party that campaigned against immigration under the slogan "Children, not Indians!", the partners of an Austrian party nostalgic for the Third Reich, an Italian neo-fascist movement and several anti-gay and anti-gipsy parties’.

The accusations of phobia and bigotry must be, as they invariably are, simply manifestations of Freudian projection.

31 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace,

It all sounds very good - until one recognises that the majority of the membership of the European Union is travelling in the opposite direction.

55 MEPs out of a total of 700+.

I think it is foolish to flourish a ticket for one destination while sitting in a vehicle going somewhere else, particularly when the driver and most of the passengers are determined to carry on their declared route.

It sounds good, but, better to ring the bell and get off.

22 June 2009 at 16:53  
Blogger McKenzie said...

It has a distinct smell of people of money wanting to get back to the good old days, which have proven beyond all reasonable doubt to have failed quite monumentally.

Would I expect anything less from the Tories? NO!

As for the rest of it though, no mention of Christian principled morality, which worries me. But We do live in a secular and physical world, and on the whole it smells less offensive than the alternatives.

The ‘centre-right’ Christian Democrats in the Parliament, and the European People's Party, have shown to be lacking in the vital minerals which are needed for any real healthy growth to occur.

But more surprising than anything is this sudden U-turn on Europe. Get everyone to argue about the details of this new 'alliance', and another Freudian principle is effectively employed.

22 June 2009 at 16:55  
Anonymous no nonny said...

Hmmm. And that picture... Is he saluting the euro-rag?

And why does he always look as if he just left the hairdressers?

22 June 2009 at 17:11  
Blogger Gnostic said...

I think Your Grace needs a new prescription for his rose tinted glasses...

22 June 2009 at 17:34  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

...the EU...is in desperate need of reform.

For those of us who believe in the sovereignty of the people, the only reforms suitable for the EU would involve either its complete demolition or British withdrawal. Your Grace’s modern day Luther, Dave Cameron, will give us neither.

22 June 2009 at 17:40  
Anonymous William said...

How typical of the National Secular Society that it should object to the idea that a body might seek to ensure that its values, beliefs and principles are well represented in an elected legislature. I don't get the impression that they are particularly reticent about ensuring that their own values, beliefs and principles are fully represented - if possible to the exclusion of all others.

Typical, too, that they are unable to resist the urge to caricature the situation in the most lurid terms instead of simply presenting the facts and allowing the reader to make up their own mind. And I thought it was supposed to be religion which was a form of brainwashing.

22 June 2009 at 19:02  
Blogger Frugal Dougal said...

Again a masterful analysis, Your Grace.

But I am somewhat doubtful about whether the EU is still in its post-war mindset. The European Coal and Steel Community was the visionary child of visionaries who wanted to lock France and Germany into a structure that would prevent them from tipping the continent and the world into another war. But it is precisely the Franco-Teutonic axis - the countries whose squabbling gave us three destructive wars from 1870-1945 and beqeathed us the bomb and the iron curtain - which is trying to control the route of the gravy-train so egregiously that it will be a miracle if conflict does not break out somewhere within the EU. But, as Your Grace will aver, sometimes miracles happen.

I remain
Your humble servant
Frugal Dougal
Happy yellow dog of the Fens (by appointment)

22 June 2009 at 19:06  
Blogger McKenzie said...

Fantastic news: Hell's representative has withdrawn herself from the contest.

22 June 2009 at 20:05  
Anonymous indigomyth said...

William said,
//How typical of the National Secular Society that it should object to the idea that a body might seek to ensure that its values, beliefs and principles are well represented in an elected legislature.//

I rather thought that they objected to people of a particular religion forcing compliance to its own doctrines onto people who do not follow that religion, which is rather what many religious groups wish to do.

I suppose the belief that the National Secular Society is trying to promote is the idea that no religious belief should be forced upon those that do not follow that religion. That is, of course, also a belief, so I suppose one could say that they are forcing people who believe that they have a right to force people to confirm to their religious belief or observance, to not force that upon people.

What if it was a Muslim group advocating Sharia law in Europe? They would, after all, only be ensuring that their values, beliefs and principles were represented in an elected legislature. I wonder how quickly your criticism of secularism would evaporate if confronted with the possibility of a Sharia proponent party gaining a significant number of seats in the EU parliament. Or is it only Christians that are allowed to force people to confirm to their religious ideals and activities?

Or, am I wrong, and you are actually only criticising the National Secular Society, not secularism per se? In that case, I must ask, how do you think secularism differs from that which the NSS is advocating?

//if possible to the exclusion of all others.//

Well, as I said, since the NSS believes that religious laws and customs should not be forced onto people not of that religion, I can only assume that since you criticise this stance, you support people being forced to a particular religious tradition, not of their choosing? Do you believe that people of religion A have the right to force people of religion B, or of no religion, to comply to the rules of "A" to the exclusion of all others?

22 June 2009 at 20:47  
Blogger McKenzie said...

We live in times when everyone wishes to rabidly endorse their own religion, be it secularism, atheism, indigoism, or whatever, and I make no pretense that I am rabidly endorsing mine with no consideration or concern for the other variant Phylogenetic strains of the disease. It really is this simple. Survival of the most virulent.

22 June 2009 at 21:21  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But the philosophical reality is that true conservatives are always reformist: they simply have to discern between that which merits conserving and that which needs reform.

Well I never, a conservative that actually understands the concept, good on you your Grace. Pity so many that claim to be conservatives have based their understanding of such, on what the enemies of conservatism, (ie The establishments BBC ) have long since claimed conservatism to be.

Can we just imagine what this country would now be like, if it had always been controlled by those that believed in true conservatism?

If we as a people had kept what is good, practical, just, humane, honest, democratic, productive, and sensible. While disregarding that which is plainly counter-productive, pathetically stupid, criminally unjust, diabolically inhumane, and other works of the devil such as socialism in general. Do we still have the wits to imagine quite how wonderful this country and indeed the world would be by now?

Paradise on Earth, in my opinion.

Lucifer and his EVIL black arts promoted so professionally by the Media/BBC/educational and scientific establishment are clearly winning the battle. The only big question still remaining, is whether the fallen bastard will ultimately win the war?

Quote

"I am in politics because of the conflict between good and evil, and I believe that in the end good will triumph."
Margaret Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher LG, OM, PC, FRS.

I wish I had MT's degree of confidence, regarding this particular extremely long standing matter.

Atlas shrugged

22 June 2009 at 21:28  
Blogger Young Mr. Brown said...

On this, the Feast Day of Sir Thomas More . . .

Hmmm. Not an auspicious sign. This was the gentleman who is generally believed to have had Luther's leading follower in England hunted down to be burned at the stake.

Mr. Cameron should be wary of Brussels.

22 June 2009 at 21:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Cameron should be wary of Brussels.

That should win a prize for understatement of the year, for the same reason that many of my comments should win a prize for overstatement.

However ONLY if Cameron actually intends to take on The EU establishment and therefore our and his own, with any seriousness of purpose.

As we all should have seen with regards to the dishonestly spoken words and actual treacherous actions of the likes of Gordon Brown and Tony Blair.

Actions speak infinitely louder then words, especially while in opposition.

I say give him six months, then hit the streets in vast numbers. For in my opinion, totally and absolutely PEACEFUL mass protest, is the ONLY thing our establishment have left to fear.

Atlas shrugged

22 June 2009 at 22:23  
Blogger ultramontane grumpy old catholic said...

Lord Shore of Stepney.

Ah - good to remember Peter Shore, Your Grace. Probably one of the best Prime Ministers we never had. May his soul rest in peace.

22 June 2009 at 22:25  
Anonymous len said...

Mckenzie,
I like your style!
Christianity has survived every attempt to stifle ,suppress, and intimidate it into submission for 2,000 yrs (without success)
I think persecution actually makes Christianity stronger.
At the risk of being politically incorrect, I would say the E U and the National Secular Society ( The Religion of Man)are not shy on forcing their views on people, and even create laws to enforce their views!

22 June 2009 at 23:00  
Blogger Valleys Mam said...

Sometimes it is wiser to stay with the devil you know, this group are unproven and a motley bunch I fear.
Mr C may well be opening up a can of worms that he could quite easily have left until their consume by date.

22 June 2009 at 23:22  
Anonymous no mouse said...

"On this, the Feast Day of Sir Thomas More, the Patron Saint of Politicians . . ."

Yes, I take Your Grace's point! I started out as a big fan of More's - after 'Man For All Seasons'; I like people who stand up for their convictions - we could do with a bit of that nowadays.

Have modified slightly on More, though - if only because he was RC and preferred el Papa to this country's sovreignty.

His "Utopia" put me off a bit, too; but that was a while ago and I need to re-read it - probably as a dystopia (and an unsuspected source of ideas for KMarx!).

Also, judging from his letters, especially to daughter Margaret, I see the much vaunted martyrdom as suspiciously well-timed and placed ... He may well have been dying of kidney disease anyway - for which there were no effective treatments, of course.

Oh yes. A consummate euro-lawyer and politician.

22 June 2009 at 23:28  
Anonymous Non Mouse said...

What Atlas Shrugged Said:
"I say give him six months, then hit the streets in vast numbers. For in my opinion, totally and absolutely PEACEFUL mass protest, is the ONLY thing our establishment have left to fear."

Though I don't see why we shouldn't do it now ...

23 June 2009 at 01:51  
Anonymous William said...

Indigomyth: Try taking the words "religion/religious", which are clearly for you red-rag words, out of your post, and then re-read it, and you might begin to understand my point. Coercion to a particular set of principles, and the attempt to ban any alternative viewpoint from the public forum, is currently the dominant feature of militant secularism. I do not see the Catholic Church, or any other Christian denomination, attempting to do the same, but merely insisting that their values should be no less valid an element in public discourse and the formulation of public policy, including legislation, than any other. The fact that one bears the label "religion" and the other doesn't is immaterial.

23 June 2009 at 02:49  
Anonymous not a machine said...

I quite like the principals , and agree with your grace i think it is the start of somthing of historical magnitude.

As for the UK i would think gordon browns attempts to divide the conservative party on europe , will produce a brief smile for a while.

diabolical things are afoot , it appears we are quietly being both invaded and asset stripped. labour are fooling everyone , we are being systamatically ruined , to pay off labours boom fraud .

i perhaps will post somthing later , but your grace should be aware that little children in impoverished parts of Africa are burning electronic waste both from here and europe , to extract the rare metals . As well as the toxic residues and soil/water poisening , the fumes from the burning are about as toxic as you can imagine .

To put it bluntly labours It revolution has an end product that they do not know what to do with . millions of tonnes of complex plastics and circuitry .

labour truly are the masters of toxic planet killing !!

and they cant deny this one as they drew up the disposal regulations .

if you dont believe me ask your local councillor where the waste audit ends for electronic goods .

1 there is no physical reprocessing in the UK , the stuff is so micro complex that its hard to recycle at an effective cost

2 disposal site , is not the same thing as recycling .

3 look on the net they dont know what to do with the stuff , there is no such thing as green consumer electronics .

labour Toxic death to all

23 June 2009 at 03:12  
Anonymous indigomyth said...

William said,
//Coercion to a particular set of principles, and the attempt to ban any alternative viewpoint from the public forum, is currently the dominant feature of militant secularism.//

But do you not think that coercion to the principle that people have the right to practice their own religion and rites as they see fit, is not actually the right thing to do?

//I do not see the Catholic Church, or any other Christian denomination, attempting to do the same, but merely insisting that their values should be no less valid an element in public discourse and the formulation of public policy, including legislation, than any other.//

And how does Christians attempting to form legislation based on their religious beliefs, to the exclusion of all others, not amount to coercion, and forcing non-Christian peoples to conform to Christian ideals.

You do not see them doing the same? What about the Catholic churches opposition to Civil Partnership; not something that concerns it, because it is to do with wider society. Or with abortion, or euthanasia? Christian denominations are forcing their mentality on wider society. Legalising euthanasia does not effect Christians if they do not choose to take part in it. However, making euthanasia illegal does directly affect people other than Christians. Making something legal does not force people to do it, but making something illegal does make people not do something. In that way, Christians ARE trying to force their beliefs and ideals onto non-religious society and people, through legislation.

Further, you failed to address my point about Muslim groups advocating Sharia law (which is, after all, only legislation conforming to Muslim ideals)? If you have no objection to Christians advocating Christian laws, on the basis that they are merely representing their religious convictions, then why do you have a problem with Muslims advocating Sharia law? I imagine that Christians in Pakistan would be glad of a good dose of secularism.

23 June 2009 at 07:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Forgive me, your Grace, but may I say that your reference to Thomas More in the context of what Cameron is seeking to do is inappropriate. More was violently opposed to the freedoms brought about by our own reformation. If, in the imaginings of Rome he is the patron Saint of Politicians, then I suspect that it would be to Europhile politicians only.

23 June 2009 at 09:22  
Anonymous len said...

Re the E U and the National Secular Society trying to silence the Christian voice.
Political Correctness is the belief that is approved and the behavior that is accepted when measured by the worldview and assumptions of secular humanism,postmodernism, multiculturalism and universalism.
The bottom line is that secular humanism is considered socially acceptable while biblical Christianity is not considered politically correct.
Political Correctness is a means of putting social pressure on Christians to suppress their speech. Christians are called not to be ashamed of the Gospel , but to speak the truth in love( Eph. 4:15)

23 June 2009 at 10:45  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace,

However worthy Cameron’s efforts are at reforming the EU, his MEPs will be defeated.

They have entered a political framework, the EU, which is fundamentally undemocratic. In other words no matter how indefatigably they work in the EU for greater democracy they will be unable to succeed as the rules do not permit accountability and transparency. The EU cannot permit democracy as its chief theoreticians admit there is no European demos (there are real people called Poles, British, French, Italians etc., who live in nation-states called Poland, Britain, France and Italy).

That is why the Irish are being asked to vote again so that they can present the EU with the ‘right’ answer. That is why the Belgian government met recently for a few weeks, to ratify the Treaty, and then promptly dissolved itself. It is no use people talking about concessions to the Irish in the form of protocols. Not one scintilla of the Lisbon Treaty has been changed. Further, the Irish will have to obey the judgments of the European Court of Justice and through these judgments will be projected the provisions in the Treaty.

I have asked myself why senior politicians are so attracted to the EU project like moths to a light. There seem to be four principal reasons. The first, since the days of Macmillan the Americans have not been interested in the formation of an ‘Atlantic Community’; the second is the pressure from continental politicians ‘Either Europe or the USA’; the third reason, equally important, is as Blair once said, ‘Europe is about the projection of power.’ Imperial power. The fourth reason is that the provisions in the Lisbon Treaty (the EU’s Constitution) ensure that politicians are not held accountable by their former nation-states. (They will believe, with conviction, that they represent the European ‘demos’ not Italians, British or French as USE is a federal structure with regions not nation-states.)

23 June 2009 at 12:19  
Anonymous William said...

Indigomyth: The issue is one of access to the public forum for one's viewpoint - how one determines what gets on to the public agenda in the first place. Christians are arguing for their vision and values to be part of that public debate, on exactly the same basis as any other, with neither special privileges nor improper restrictions. (And I have no problem with Muslims doing exactly the same.)

The NSS, however, consistently wishes to exclude all distinctively Christian input from even reaching the agenda for public debate - as Len says above, any viewpoint which contradicts secular humanism is not considered socially acceptable; and with secularists having the whip hand, it is they who are "forcing their mentality on wider society" by excluding others from that debate. In order for the values of Christians to be actualised in law, they must prevail in the public forum, and any possibility of that is foreclosed if the Church cannot seek, through the ordinary democratic processes, to have its values represented as fully as it can in the legislative process (or, as the NSS so febrilely puts it, to "pack the EU parliament with obedient Catholics").

23 June 2009 at 13:05  
Anonymous indigomyth said...

William said,

//In order for the values of Christians to be actualised in law, they must prevail in the public forum, and any possibility of that is foreclosed if the Church cannot seek, through the ordinary democratic processes, to have its values represented as fully as it can in the legislative process//

But that is exactly my point. Why should Christians have the right to have society reflect their religious values, laws and customs? If Christians or Muslims were only campaigning for the way they want to live, rather than demanding other people obey the same laws and customs as them, then that would be different. But, as I demonstrated with euthanasia and abortion, certain Christian groups are not merely satisfied with not engaging in certain activities (like euthanasia) they want everyone else to obey the same rules.

If it was certain Muslims wanting to outlaw consumption of pork and alcohol, the banning of all Christian symbols (not just in the public forum, but in all places), and the prosecution of apostates, they would only be advocating their values and beliefs. Yet I should say that it is very wrong for them to want to do so, don't you? Would you be happy to have the minutia of your life dictated by Muslims, according to Islamic rules, even though you are not a Muslim? If not, why should Christians be allowed to do the same to everyone that does not share their belief system? What is the compulsion that makes Christians want to force everyone to act the way they do, by outlawing euthanasia and abortion. It does not directly effect them, so we can only assume that they want to force people who do not share their beliefs, to act like they do.

//The NSS, however, consistently wishes to exclude all distinctively Christian input from even reaching the agenda for public debate - as Len says above, any viewpoint which contradicts secular humanism is not considered socially acceptable//

But then, according to your logic, you should have no problem with this. After all, all they are doing is saying their values and vision for society should be the model on which society is based. It seems you are criticising them for exactly the same thing that you think the Christians being permitted to do? If you support Christians trying to make society more Christians, by forcing people to comply with their laws and customs, then why do you protest so much against he National Secular Society for doing exactly the same thing?

//with secularists having the whip hand, it is they who are "forcing their mentality on wider society" by excluding others from that debate.//

I suppose. In the same way that all these racial equalists are forcing their mentality upon the neo-Nazis and fascists.

Secularism is the process by which people can live their lives how they choose, without forcing conformity to a particular religious tradition. Is that not something to advocate?

23 June 2009 at 18:23  
Anonymous William said...

Indigomyth:

The heart of your misunderstanding, from which all the rest follows, lies in your supposition that "according to [my] logic" I should be content with the fact that the NSS "consistently wishes to exclude all distinctively Christian input from even reaching the agenda for public debate".

You do not appear to understand the difference between allowing viewpoints and values a space in the public forum - where they must take their chance and argue their case on an equal footing with others - and deciding a priori that one set of values (and secularism is as value-laden an ideology as any other) is non-negotiably normative and that anything which fails to conform to that particular vision for society is simply not to be allowed on to the agenda for discussion.

In every society, laws are made which compel adherence even from those who do not agree either with the laws themselves or with the values underlying them. "Forcing conformity" is what laws are for. Secularism, at least in its present manifestation, so far from enabling people to "live their lives how they choose", seeks (usually successfully) to limit the actions of bodies (such as Catholic adoption agencies), as well as individuals, to those which do not challenge or contradict its basic narrative - and it does so by determining the agenda in advance and allowing no space in the formulation of public policy for any conflicting position. The implicit line is "This is what we seek to achieve, where as a society we are heading, and the only legitimate question is how best to achieve it". I repeat that I see absolutely no evidence that the Churches are seeking to foreclose public debate on the underlying narrative in the way that we routinely see from secularists; in fact, rather the opposite - the Churches want to see the debate widened into areas (like pro-life issues) which secularists have long since succeeded in shutting off and treating as forbidden ground, not to be trod by any who are so unenlightened as not to see that their perspective is simply right.

(If I have still not succeeded in communicating, then I see little point in continuing this dialogue - feel free therefore to have the final word.)

23 June 2009 at 20:29  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It appears that any political group which seeks to conserve Christian ethical principles, protect the unborn, sustain the institution of marriage and uphold the family as the foundational building block of society, is ‘neo-fascist’.

It may seem to be the case, to those who watch far too much BBC TV.

It is The EU and the people who created it who are the real fascists. You seriously do not need to be a well read historian to know this to be a fact of life and ultimately genocidal death.

However you do have to be a habitual liar, a total bastard, a complete fool, or indeed all 3, to get, and keep a job at The BBC.

Atlas shrugged

23 June 2009 at 20:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For your information, the Finnish MEP Hannu Takkula, who was supposed to be member of the new Conservative group, has announced today that he will stay in the liberal ALDE group. The cohesion of the new group seems fragile indeed...

24 June 2009 at 18:33  
Anonymous Adrian P said...

Labour and the conservatives have signed every EU treaty passed to them.
The are diminishing our Numbers, they know we will not say yes to the EU.
What do you suppose is going to happen when the numbers are right.
When does the EUropean cultural Revolution begin that finally rids itself of the British, the Spanish, the Itlaians, the German peoples and becomes the New Historic Entity they so clearly wish.

I don't know what he is up to, I just know threatens the lives the lives of me and my children.

24 June 2009 at 22:29  
Anonymous Adrian P said...

David Cameron only does what his Bilderberg Puppetmasters tell him to do.

28 June 2009 at 23:07  

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